August 9th, 2012
11:55 AM ET

NOAA raises prediction for named storms

The Atlantic Ocean may have a couple more named storms this year than the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration initially predicted, the group said Thursday.

NOAA now predicts 12 to 17 named storms, up from the nine to 15 it predicted shortly before the June 1 start of hurricane season. Six named storms, including the current Tropical Storm/Hurricane Ernesto, have been produced so far.

For the Atlantic Ocean, a normal season would produce 12 named storms (with top sustained winds of at least 39 mph), including six hurricanes and three major ones.

NOAA also adjusted its predicted hurricane range, to five to eight (up from four to eight). Two to three of those should be major hurricanes, meaning Category 3 (with maximum sustained winds of at least 111 mph) or higher, NOAA says.

“We are increasing the likelihood of an above-normal season because storm-conducive wind patterns and warmer-than-normal sea surface temperatures are now in place in the Atlantic,” said Gerry Bell, lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA's Climate Prediction Center. “These conditions are linked to the ongoing high-activity era for Atlantic hurricanes that began in 1995. Also, strong early season activity is generally indicative of a more active season.”

NOAA scientists raised the ranges despite their belief that El Nino - unusually warm temperatures in the equatorial Pacific Ocean - should develop in August or September. El Nino suppresses storm development, but Bell said that wasn't expected to have an influence until later in the hurricane season.

“We have a long way to go until the end of the season, and we shouldn’t let our guard down,” said Laura Furgione, acting director of NOAA’s National Weather Service.  “Hurricanes often bring dangerous inland flooding as we saw a year ago in the Northeast with Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee. Even people who live hundreds of miles from the coast need to remain vigilant through the remainder of the season.”

Read more:

Tropical Storm Ernesto nearing 2nd landfall 

NASA study links extreme weather, climate change

What's behind major flood disasters throughout Asia? 

FEMA: Have a plan for hurricane season

Could you survive a weather disaster?

FULL STORY
soundoff (64 Responses)
  1. chence

    And these "forecasters" make their dire predictions from the hotbed area for hurricanes, Colorado.

    August 9, 2012 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  2. vowelmovement

    A new computer model showing the possible risks of a hurricane demonstrates that the storms may cause more damage than previously expected, especially further inland. The model was created by Risk Management Solutions, a producer of hurricane computer models used by insurers to set rates.

    The belief is that hurricanes break up after reaching land. However, the model shows it could take longer for that to happen. This has the effect of increasing damage projections inland. This is the company's first update of the model since 2003 and that there have been significant improvements in research since then. Hurricane Charley was closely examined and used to justify the model's findings. In 2005, Hurricane Charley caused damage as far inland as Orlando.

    August 9, 2012 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. richard svalesen

    These guys are amazing. First they raise the prediction then lower then raise again with no internal consequences of being terminated. I want their job and money!

    August 9, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thermion7

      well, you could have gone to school for this...
      their job isnt to stick to one story... their job is to monitor and report changes in conditions and model possibilities.

      August 9, 2012 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • jim edwards

      I want a job also

      August 9, 2012 at 7:17 pm | Report abuse |
  4. NAM VET

    IF YOU WANT TO LIVE,GET THE HELL OUT AND LEAVE ALL THE STUFF YOU CAN LIVE WITHOUT. DON'T CLOG THE
    ESCAPE ROUTES. THINK OF OTHERS ON THE WAY OUT OF HARMS WAY,

    August 9, 2012 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  5. NAM VET

    JUST A WORD TO THE WISE, THIS CURRENT UNCLE DOES NOT REALY GIVE A RATS ASS FOR YOU. IF YOU LIVE OR DIE. JUST THAT YOU VOTE BEFORE YOUR LAST BREATH.OBAMA HATES AMERICA AND THAT'S JUST THE WAY IT IS. WAKE UP AND SMELL THE ROSES IN "OUR" ROSE GARDEN BEFORE THEY DISSAPEAR FOR EVER.

    August 9, 2012 at 2:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • lazyliberal

      Too lazy to hit the shift button so you make it all caps? I wish you cared for America as much as our President does.

      August 10, 2012 at 11:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • MaryInBoise

      We get your point. You hate Obama and he's the cause of everything problem from unemployment to puppy cancer. Please stop shouting.

      August 13, 2012 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
  6. sparky

    Before the weather became a political issue it was established that 350 parts per million of carbon in the atmosphere was dangerous we ve been over that since 1988 and are currently at about 392 so if 350 isn t the number i d like one of you lemmings to the republican party who are to stupid to think for yourselves to tell us what the real number is

    August 9, 2012 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Leslie Ann Warren

    Here We Go Again, I Will Jus Pray Abt It Cause God Is The Only One That Knw The Real Predictions In Jesus Name!!

    August 9, 2012 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  8. RRMON

    Tropical storms replenish drought regions, in order to generate enough moisture for the deep regions the storms have to swell (category) prior to the mainland entry.

    August 12, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
  9. John

    They change their predictions in the middle of the season like they change the historical temperatures to make "global warming" look worse. Garbage!

    August 13, 2012 at 10:27 am | Report abuse |
  10. Brian Gregory

    I am of the impression they should name all storm systems. Do you know how difficult it is to be 'just a number', and try to motivate others when you're identified as OB1拳OB? I dont think they do, and then you see articles like this that break my heart. So much disrespect for a storm system that's tried so hard, by those who dont even know how hard he worked to get to where he's at. Blind, people are blind, I tell you.

    August 14, 2012 at 11:20 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Sam

    I'm surprised they have the time to do predictions, I though they were too busy doing global warming research and Muslim outreach? Or was that NASA? Does it make a difference, who believes diddly coming from any govt. agency these days....

    August 27, 2012 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Davehuckle

    Soon enough, with accelerated Global Warming occurring right now, they will have to add another Hurricane category, perhaps a Cat. 6 & a Cat. 7. As the planet is warming there is a lot more energy in the atmosphere which will greatly increase the strength of future Hurricanes.

    August 29, 2012 at 10:50 pm | Report abuse |
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