The U.S. Atlantic basin will likely experience a very active hurricane season, the Colorado State University forecast team announced today, increasing its earlier prediction for the 2007 hurricane season.
The team's forecast now anticipates 17 named storms forming in the Atlantic basin between June 1 and Nov. 30. Nine of the 17 storms are predicted to become hurricanes, and of those nine, five are expected to develop into intense or major hurricanes with sustained winds of 111 mph or greater. Long-term averages are 9.6 named storms, 5.9 hurricanes and 2.3 intense hurricanes per year.
"We are calling for a very active hurricane season this year, but not as active as the 2004 and 2005 seasons," said Phil Klotzbach of the Colorado State hurricane forecast in a in statement announcing the predictions.
"Based on our latest forecast, the probability of a major hurricane making landfall along the U.S. coastline is 74 percent compared with the last-century average of 52 percent.”
The hurricane team's forecasts are based on the premise that global oceanic and atmospheric conditions - such as El Niño, sea surface temperatures and sea level pressures - that preceded active or inactive hurricane seasons in the past provide meaningful information about similar trends in future seasons.