It has already been a very busy start to hurricane season in the Atlantic Basin, and it does not look like it will be slowing down anytime soon. Yesterday Colorado State University released an updated forecast for the rest of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, and today NOAA updated their forecast as well.
Both NOAA and CSU raised their prediction for total named storms, including the 9 that have already happened this year, and the number of storms becoming hurricanes. These categories, as well as the number for hurricanes reaching category 3 or higher are foretasted to be around double what we would see in an average year.
Tropical systems become a named storm when wind speeds reach 39 mph or higher, which classifies it as a tropical storm. Once winds reach 74 mph or higher, the tropical storm is upgraded to a hurricane.
The names for storms are assigned alphabetically from a list that is made from the World Meteorological Organization. For Atlantic and Pacific hurricanes, there is a list of male and female names which are used on a six-year rotation. The only time that the full list is not repeated every 7 years is if a storm is so notably costly or deadly that it would be insensitive to reuse the name. In that case, another name that starts with the same letter will replace it on the list.
The lists for named storms in the Atlantic Basin and Eastern Pacific follow the same pattern of alphabetically alternating male and female names, but follow a different set of assigned names.
Once names starting with every letter of alphabet have been used, storms will start to receive names from the Greek Alphabet, which is something that has not happened since 2005.
The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 – November 30 with the peak stretching from the middle of August through late October. This is when most of the tropical activity happens, but it is not limited to just these dates.
Here in Ohio, we might not be in line for a direct hit as a hurricane makes landfall, but tropical moisture from hurricanes has made its way through the state and created heavy downpours.
Now is the time to prepare for storms and hurricanes, before the hit. One way that you can do that is staying tuned to NBC4 through our mobile weather app or on NBC4i.com/weather. If you are driving through tropical moisture or a storms that has created a flooded roadway, remember “turn around, don’t drown.”