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NOAA predicts below-normal Atlantic hurricane season

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA’s) Climate Prediction Centerthe 2015 Atlantic hurricane season will likely be below normal. NOAA released its predictions this week, May 24-30, which is National Hurricane Preparedness Week. But lesser storms that don’t reach hurricane force can still be a major factor for coastal areas.

For the hurricane season, which officially runs from June 1 to November 30, NOAA predicts a 70% likelihood of six to 11 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which three to six could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including zero to two major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of 111 mph or higher). There also is a 20% chance of a near-normal season, and a 10% chance of an above-normal season.

The outlook for the Eastern Pacific and Central Pacific basins is reversed, however. For the Eastern Pacific hurricane basin, NOAA’s 2015 outlook is for a 70% chance of an above-normalhurricane season. That outlook calls for a 70% probability of 15 to 22 named storms, of which seven to 12 are expected to become hurricanes, including five to eight major hurricanes. For the Central Pacific hurricane basin, NOAA’s outlook is for a 70% chance of an above-normal season with five to eight tropical cyclones likely.



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