The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center released an updated hurricane season outlook today (Aug. 9).
According to Steve Pfaff, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Wilmington, the early start to the hurricane season, and above normal temperatures in the tropics combined with a less active El Niño pattern also indicate the possibility of an active season. On average, the Atlantic season will spawn 12 storms. Historically, the peak comes between August and October.
Of more concern, though, is a system located 200 miles north of the northern Leeward Islands, 99L, which has a 50 percent chance of developing into a tropical cyclone over the next five days.
Even if strengthening takes place, chances are low for 99L to rapidly intensify and become a hurricane. Earlier, as a tropical storm, Franklin made a relatively mild run across the Yucatan Peninsula.
Long before the adoption of a naming system by the World Meteorological Organization, hurricanes in the West Indies were named for the particular saint's day on which they occurred.
The WMO uses a strict naming procedure created by an worldwide committee, according to the NOAA.
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According to Pfaff, during the typical Atlantic Hurricane Season, which runs from June 1 to November 30, we see around 12 named storms.
But, if a storm is particularly catastrophic, that particular name is 'retired, ' meaning it is removed from the list.
Bell noted other factors that point to an above-normal season include warmer waters across the tropical Atlantic than models previously predicted and higher predicted activity from available models.
The first hurricane of the season could be Franklin.
Hurricane Franklin has made landfall on the coast of Mexico.
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