New hurricane storm predictions for 2017


Hurricane Wilma over Cozumel on October 21, 2005, taken by GOES satellite (color enhanced). Image courtesy of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

HOLT, Fla., June 1, 2017—Colorado State University has adjusted its hurricane predictions for 2017 at the start of this year’s hurricane season.

In April, CSU’s Tropical Meteorology Project forecast a below-average storm season of 11 named storms and four hurricanes, with two of the four hurricanes becoming major storms of category 3, 4, or 5.

However, with warming tropical waters and a weak or non-existent El Nino, the Project now predicts 2017 will be an average hurricane season with 13 named storms, six hurricanes and two of the six hurricanes becoming major hurricanes (category 3, 4, or 5).

According to CSU, the Florida panhandle has an 18 percent probability for at least one major hurricane (category 3, 4 or 5) to make landfall this season.

For Okaloosa County, the probability of a named storm hitting the area is 5 percent and a major hurricane landfall is 4 percent.

Overall, Florida now has a 54 percent probability for a hurricane and a 22 percent chance for a major storm impact.

Since 1878, 98 hurricanes have impacted Florida. Of those, 32 were category 3, 4 or 5 storms.

“It only takes one hurricane … to make it an active season.”

CSU Tropical Meteorology Project
Extended Range Forecast

There has already been one named storm this year. Tropical Storm Arlene spun up in the Atlantic Basin southeast of Newfoundland April 15 well before the official June 1 start of the 2017 hurricane season.

The report reminds coastal residents that it only takes one storm to make the season eventful.

“Coastal residents are reminded that it only takes one hurricane making landfall to make it an active season for them, and they need to prepare the same for every season, regardless of how much activity is predicted,” according to the report.
CSU will provide additional seasonal updates July 3 and Aug. 4.

Hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30.

Stephanie Holcombe

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