FORT COLLINS, Colo. — Colorado State University (CSU) released its first 2022 hurricane activity outlook Thursday. Researchers said they believe this hurricane season will have above-average activity.
Four major hurricanes are being forecasted for the Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June 1 to Nov. 30. Over the last 30 years, the average for major hurricanes has been 3.2, according to data released by CSU. Forecasters anticipate a higher-than-average probability of a major hurricane making landfall along the U.S. coastline and in the Caribbean.
Major hurricanes are classified as Category 3 or higher on the Saffir-Simpson scale. Category 3 storms have sustained winds of 111 mph or higher.
The CSU report estimates there will be:
- 9 hurricanes (average is 7.2)
- 19 named storms (average is 14.4)
- 90 named storm days (average is 69.4)
Researchers said weak La Niña conditions in the Pacific will persist and will transition to neutral by this summer and fall. El Niño conditions are unlikely during this hurricane season, forecasters said. El Niños typically lessen Atlantic hurricane activity through increases in vertical wind shear, which tear apart hurricanes.
The report also says the eastern and central tropical Atlantic are currently near average sea surface temperatures, while the Caribbean and most of the subtropical Atlantic are warmer than normal.
2022 Atlantic Tropical System Names
The 2021 season was the third-most active hurricane season on record. There were 21 named storms and seven hurricanes, with four of those becoming major hurricanes. Four tropical storms and four hurricanes made landfall in the U.S. last season, including Category 4 storm Ida. Hurricane Ida came ashore in southern Louisiana near Port Fourchon. At landfall, Ida had sustained winds of 150 mph, with gusts measured at 172 mph.
The 2020 season was historic. It was the most active season in terms of tropical depressions and named storms. There were 30 named tropical storms and 14 hurricanes, with seven hurricanes becoming major hurricanes.
CSU will release its second hurricane forecast for 2022 on June 2.
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