NOAA still predicting between 3-5 major hurricanes for 2022 Atlantic hurricane season

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Forecasters with the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration are still predicting between three to five major hurricanes for the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season. Through Aug. 3, the Atlantic basin had yet to see a single hurricane in 2022.

This marks the first year since 2017 that a hurricane has not developed by Aug. 1 in the Atlantic.

Even though hurricane season began on June 1, NOAA is still predicting 14-20 named storms (winds of 39 mph or greater), of which six to 10 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or greater). Of those, three to five could become major hurricanes (winds of 111 mph or greater). NOAA said it had 70% confidence in that forecast.

“I urge everyone to remain vigilant as we enter the peak months of hurricane season,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo in a news release. “The experts at NOAA will continue to provide the science, data and services needed to help communities become hurricane resilient and climate-ready for the remainder of hurricane season and beyond.”

NOAA forecasters are still expecting above-normal activity for the remainder of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season. Forecasters have slightly decreased the likelihood of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season to 60%. It is lower from the outlook issued in May, which predicted a 65% chance. The likelihood of near-normal activity has risen to 30% and the chances remain at 10% for a below-normal season.

“We’re just getting into the peak months of August through October for hurricane development, and we anticipate that more storms are on the way,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad.

Earlier tropical systems

So far this season, there have been three named storms: Tropical Storm Alex, Tropical Storm Bonnie and Tropical Storm Colin.

An average hurricane season produces 14 named storms, seven hurricanes and three major hurricanes.

“Communities and families should prepare now for the remainder of what is still expected to be an active hurricane season,” said National Weather Service Director Ken Graham. “Ensure that you are ready to take action if a hurricane threatens your area by developing an evacuation plan and gathering hurricane supplies now, before a storm is bearing down on your community.”

FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell urged for people not to led their guard down.

“This is especially important as we enter peak hurricane season—the next Ida or Sandy could still be lying in wait,” Criswell said.

The 2022 Atlantic hurricane season runs through Nov. 30.