The peak of the 2013 hurricane season, which begins this week and continues through October, is "on track to be above normal," representatives from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said.
Northern Virginia's most serious brushes in recent memory with hurricanes include Hurricane Irene, which hit August 27, 2011, and Hurricane Isabel, which hit on Sept. 19, 2003.
The updated outlook on 2013 hurricanes revealed last week calls for a 70 percent chance of an above-normal season. Across the Atlantic Basin for the entire season – June 1 to Nov. 30 – NOAA’s updated seasonal outlook (which includes the activity to date of tropical storms Andrea, Barry, Chantal, and Dorian) projects a 70 percent chance for each of the following ranges:
- between 13 and 19 named storms (top winds of 39 mph or higher), including
- 6 to 9 hurricanes (top winds of 74 mph or higher), of which
- 3 to 5 could be major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of at least 111 mph)
The ranges this year are above the 30-year seasonal averages of 12 named storms, six hurricanes and three major hurricanes.
The 2013 hurricane names still possible for this season are:
“Our confidence for an above-normal season is still high because the predicted atmospheric and oceanic conditions that are favorable for storm development have materialized,” said Gerry Bell, Ph.D., lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service.
“Also, two of the four named storms to-date formed in the deep tropical Atlantic, which historically is an indicator of an active season.”
Just ahead of the peak of the hurricane season, NOAA National Hurricane Center Director Dr. Rick Knabb and senior hurricane specialist Daniel Brown will answer questions about tracking and forecasting of potentially damaging storms and how best to prepare.
- What: Use Twitter to chat live online with NOAA's National Hurricane Center
- When: Tuesday, August 13 at 2 p.m. ET on the @NOAALive Twitter feed
- How: Tweet your questions to @NOAALive using hashtag #HurriChat (or just follow the conversation hashtag).
Read Fairfax County's tips on how to prepare for a hurricane.
Are you concerned about this year's hurricane season? What, if anything, are you doing to prepare? Tell us in the comments below.
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