2019 hurricane season could be active, forecasters say

Written by Staff Writer

Editor’s Note — This article was originally published by CNN International on January 2, 2019

It’s looking like another potentially active hurricane season.

Forecasters at the Colorado State University say a “near-normal” season is more likely than a “near- or below-normal” season this year, based on tropical trends and atmospheric factors.

Precipitation patterns over the past few years are expected to bring neutral hurricane seasons to 2019 and 2020, which usually result in below-normal hurricane activity.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is expecting some “high-impact” storms to develop this season, which runs from June 1 to November 30.

An above-average season typically brings a number of Category 3 and above hurricanes, with the majority of storms forming in the Atlantic Ocean.

Last year’s 2017 hurricane season was marked by a succession of devastating storms, which included a disastrous Category 5 storm in Puerto Rico.

1 / 11 Hurricane Michael struck Florida’s Panhandle on October 10, killing at least 15 people. Around 3.1 million people lost power in the wake of the storm. CNN found out why Caribbean Caribbean governments had been scrambling to help victims and residents for months on end before the storm hits. You can watch “Hurricane In Your Hands” below.

In the wake of Michael’s devastation, FEMA director Brock Long said: “Our goal is two simple: to make it through the next storm season, and we’re already on our way to doing that.”

More than 4 million homes and businesses were affected by Hurricane Michael, according to FEMA. There were more than 15 deaths from the storm, which was the single most expensive storm in U.S. history. The damage from Michael comes to around $22 billion.

Category 5 hurricanes are the most dangerous, packing winds of 157 mph or more, but Michael hit at a Category 4 strength and weakened after it hit the Florida Panhandle.

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