Above Average Hurricane Season Could Take 2020 To A Whole New Level
We here in Maine are not immune to hurricane season and the Atlantic hurricane season has officially begun as of June 1st.
The season officially runs from June 1st to November 30th so, we've got six months to endure the season ahead of us.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting a more active than normal hurricane season. A 60% of a more active season is predicted with a 30% normal season is predicted as well as only a 10% prediction of a below-normal activity for the season.
The NOAA has predicted that 13 to 19 storms will become named, with 6 to 10 of those actually becoming full-fledged hurricanes with wind speeds 74 mph or higher. It is also expected that 3 to 6 of these hurricanes will become major hurricanes, with winds of 111 mph or higher. These major hurricanes would be categorized as 3, 4 or 5.
The average is typically 12 named storms, 6 becoming hurricanes and, eventually, 3 becoming major hurricanes.
Multiple factors are being considered when it comes to the prediction of increased activity of this year's hurricane season, including factors in the Pacific that won't be able to suppress Atlantic conditions and increased sea surface temperatures of the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea, among other factors.
To date, we have already experienced one storm in May, Arthur, but have plenty of names ready to go to name the new ones to come our way as the season ramps up.
Especially challenging this year will be the addition of the coronavirus pandemic, which will need to include unprecedented safety measures in which preparedness by government organizations and citizens will be absolutely essential.
Maine has seen our share of hurricanes including Hurricane Bob from 1991, which left Maine with $1.5 billion in damages despite becoming a tropical storm by the time it hit the Gulf of Maine.
We also saw the remnants of Hurricane Sandy, which devastated the eastern United States in 2012, creating $70 billion in damages in it's wake.
In 2011, Governor LePage declared a state of emergency for the State of Maine prior to the anticipated passing of Hurricane Irene, which caused a total of 49 deaths and $13.5 billion in damages nationwide.
Some recommendations from the Maine Emergency Management Agency for Mainers to consider when it comes to hurricanes include creating a plan if you need to be evacuated from your area due to the storm as well as plan on two evacuation routes taking into consideration the risk of flooding.