NOAA releases the 2022 hurricane season forecast

Forecasters predict yet another active hurricane season
Published: May. 24, 2022 at 11:28 AM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released it’s pre-season 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season outlook Tuesday calling for the 6th hurricane season in a row with an above normal amount of named storms.

Forecasters with the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida and with NOAA are forecasting 14 to 21 named storms, 6 to 10 hurricanes, and 3 to 6 major hurricanes with wind speeds over 130 MPH. The probability for an above average season is 65% with only a 25% chance of near-normal conditions and a 10% chance of a below-average hurricane season.

The average amount of named storms in a year is fourteen with seven becoming hurricanes and three major hurricanes.

The last year with an average or below average amount of named storms was in 2014 when only eight tropical storms formed.

The main causes for the above-average forecast is La Niña conditions continuing in the Pacific Ocean for the third season in a row and abnormally high sea-surface temperatures in the main development region of the tropics.

La Niña is a cooling of near-surface waters off the west coast of South America. Lower sea-surface temperatures inhibits thunderstorms from forming in this area which decreases the amount of wind shear over the Atlantic basin. Unlike supercell thunderstorms and tornadoes, wind shear helps to prevent tropical storms and hurricanes from forming and strengthening.

The United States has experienced more category 4 and 5 hurricane landfalls since 2017 (9) than between 1963 and 2016. The U.S. also experienced the first category 5 hurricane to make landfall in the U.S. in 2018′s Michael since 1992′s Andrew in South Florida.

Louisiana has been the target of tropical storms and hurricanes over the last few years. Since 2019, eight named storms have made landfall in Louisiana. Of those eight storms, six were hurricanes and three were major hurricane’s including Hurricane Laura and Delta in 2020 and Hurricane Ida in 2021.

Despite what is expected to be another active and potentially costly hurricane season, the record streak of a named storm forming before June 1st, which is the official start of the hurricane season, should end this year since no storms are expected to form for at least a week. Every season since 2015 has had a pre-season storm.

The Atlantic Hurricane Season runs from June 1st to November 30th.

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