May 31, 2005 It's that time again: The 2005 Atlantic hurricane season begins Wednesday, June 1 and continues through November 30.
In a statement Tuesday, forecasters at the National Weather Service in San Juan noted that this season is expected to be another very active one. "Seasonal predictions from both NOAA and Colorado State University's Dr. William Gray call for an above-normal season."
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's forecast indicates 12 to 15 hurricanes, three to five of which are expected to strengthen into major hurricanes. Gray's latest forecast, issued Tuesday, calls for 15 tropical storms and eight hurricanes, four of which are expected to be intense Category Three or higher on the Saffir-Simpson scale, with speeds of 111 miles per hour or more.
According to the National Weather Service, historical long-term seasonal average is for 10 tropical storms, 6 hurricanes and 2 intense hurricanes.
The first named storm of this season will be Arlene, followed by Bret, Cindy, Dennis, Emily, Franklin, Gert, Harvey, Irene, Jose, Katrina, Lee, Maria, Nate, Ophelia, Philippe, Rita, Stan, Tammy, Vince and
In 2004, 14 tropical storms and one subtropical storm formed in the
North Atlantic Basin, which includes the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. Nine of these storms developed into hurricanes, with six strengthening into major hurricanes.
According to weather service statistics, the strongest hurricane was Ivan, which reached Category Five status.
Hurricanes are primarily a feature of tropical and subtropical waters. In the North Atlantic Basin, they occur during the summer and fall, the traditional hurricane season.
Depending upon the time of year, tropical systems originate in different parts of the North Atlantic. Hurricanes can strike anywhere along the Lesser and Greater Antilles. September is the month of greatest hurricane activity, but the NWS cautions "that does not mean that powerful storms cannot hit during other parts of the season."
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