2016 Atlantic hurricane season outlook released
COLUMBIA — Researchers at the Colorado State University released their 2016 Atlantic hurricane season outlook Thursday. Dr. Philip Klotzbach, a meteorologist at Colorado State University, specializes in Atlantic basic seasonal hurricane forecasts.
In his outlook, Dr. Klotzbach forecasts a “near-average” hurricane season, with 12 named storms, five of them becoming hurricanes, and two becoming classified as major hurricanes.
The 30-year average features 12 named storms, six hurricanes, and two major hurricanes.
The Saffir-Simpson scale, which rates the intensity of a hurricane, is based upon the maximum sustained wind speeds of a storm.
Storms with sustained winds 74 mph or greater are classified as hurricanes. Winds that are sustained greater than 110 mph are classified as a major hurricane.
Since 1995, over 150 hurricanes have formed in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean. Of those hurricanes, only 19% have made landfall in the U.S.
The Atlantic basin has been quiet in recent years. A hurricane has not made landfall in the U.S. since Hurricane Isaac in 2012. Although Sandy was a major hurricane, it was classified as ‘extratropical’ hours before making landfall on the New Jersey coastline.
The Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1 and lasts until November 30.