Above-Average Hurricane Season Predicted For 2018

The U.S. was hit by three major hurricanes (Harvey, Irma and Maria) as well as four other storms (Cindy, Emily, Phillipe and Nate). The 1981-2010 average is 12 named tropical systems, six Hurricanes and two Major Hurricanes.

That means more storms, and more severe storms, could form this year.

The outlook calls for a slightly above average year in the Atlantic-with 14 named storms, 7 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes of category 3 intensity or higher.

Also, sea surface temperatures in the eastern tropical Atlantic are "slightly cooler than normal", and as such, "provide less fuel for tropical cyclone formation and intensification", they said. Warm Pacific waters, known as El Nino, create high-altitude winds over the Atlantic Ocean, which rip apart storms before they can coalesce into cyclones.

"Spring is very volatile", Klotzbach said.

People who live along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts should get ready to hunker down this summer and fall as meteorologists are predicting another above-average hurricane season.

A combination of fewer tropical storms and a lessening reliance on GOM oil and natural gas production, thanks to the growth in production from inland unconventional plays, has kept hurricane-related damage to the nation's energy infrastructure and markets to a minimum in recent years. More than 100 people died as a result of major storms previous year and the events caused an estimated $200 billion in damage, according to figures from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Maria devastated Puerto Rico and Dominica.

The 2005 Atlantic hurricane season was the most active on record, with 28 named storms, according to data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. It's considered among some of the worst natural disasters to hit the islands. "Dont think that the next time its necessarily going to do that". A stronger El Nino would give us a much needed break from hurricane season.

  • Tracy Klein