Updated NOAA ‘Average’ Atlantic hurricane season reflects increased number of storms

Weather Headlines

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center (CPC), which issues outlooks for the hurricane season, will now be using a new set of data to compare tropical activity of a season to ‘average.’

Climatological data acquired from 1991-2020 will now be reflective of the new ‘average’ for hurricane seasons, starting with the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season.

Based on this new 30-year time period, averages for named storms and hurricanes are higher: 14 named storms and 7 hurricanes. The average for major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5) has not changed at 3.

The previous averages were 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes. These numbers were reflective of data acquired from the 30-year period of 1981-2010.

By keeping track of the climatological data and updating records, NOAA is able to better determine if a hurricane season will be above-, near- or below-average. This process of updating the average occurs once every decade.

Forecasters at Colorado State University are predicting an above-average 2021 Atlantic hurricane season. To learn more about their forecast, click HERE.

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