Forecasters at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center predict above-average activity during the Atlantic hurricane season in 2022.
They estimate a 65% chance that this year’s hurricane season will be more active than usual, with only a 10% chance of being less active, making it the seventh consecutive above-average hurricane season.
In a news release, the NOAA outlined how many hurricanes are expected to make landfall along the Atlantic Coast and Texas during hurricane season, which begins June 1 and ends November 30.
NOAA forecasters predict 14-21 “named storms,” or storms with winds exceeding 39 mph. An estimated 6-10 of those storms have the probability of turning into hurricanes, with 3-6 becoming major hurricanes with winds over 111 mph.
The administration states it is “70% confident” in the above forecast. The release explains that the ongoing La Niña, along with warmer seas and weaker trade winds, is to blame for the potential increase in storms. According to CBS, warmer water in the Caribbean Sea leads to stronger African monsoons, which will fuel future hurricanes pushing up through the Gulf Coast.
For Texas and other states around the Atlantic, officials are focused on helping people prepare, providing early and accurate forecasts and warnings for communities in the path of severe storms.
“Early preparation and understanding your risk is key to being hurricane resilient and climate-ready,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo.
As with every hurricane season, residents are advised to check the NOAA website regularly for storm updates.
“Hurricane Ida spanned nine states, demonstrating that anyone can be in the direct path of a hurricane and in danger from the remnants of a storm system,” stated Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Deanne Criswell.
In addition, Criswell recommends that families be proactive by preparing for any possible hurricanes in advance. Government websites such as Ready.gov and Listo.gov offer preparedness tips, and the FEMA app can be downloaded to provide emergency alerts in real-time.
“Essentially, everything is pointing toward an active Atlantic season,” John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas state climatologist and director of the Texas Center for Climate Studies, told the Tribune.
Reports from the Colorado State University also found a 46% chance of a major hurricane striking the Gulf Coast this season.
“They can wander just about anywhere, so the risk of flooding is just about everywhere in the state from a hurricane,” Nielsen-Gammon added.