The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has predicted that the 2017 hurricane season will be worse than what was originally expected. The agency has increased its forecasts for this season to 14 to 19 storms, five to nine hurricanes, and two to five major hurricanes. The increase in the prediction is due to the vanishing El Niño and the warm temperature.
The 2017 hurricane season officially started on June 1 and will end on November 30, 2017. The actual season, however, began early with Tropical Storm Arlene with 50 mph wind in April.
Tropical Storm Bret followed Arlene in June. Bret lasted over seven days, with a 45 mph wind. Bret struck Trinidad, an island that has rarely been hit by tropical cyclones due to its location. Tropical Storm Cindy visited the state of Louisiana a few days after Bret. Cindy, with 60 mph wind, was the state’s first tropical storm since Hurricane Isaac, which struck the state in 2012.
Tropical Storm Don was a short-lived storm that brought flash flooding in Trinidad. It became the fourth storm in recent history to bring damages to the affected areas. Tropical Storm Emily formed in the Atlantic in the last days of July and lasted until early August. Emily was downgraded to a tropical depression before it landed on Florida soil. Still, Florida Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for counties in southern and central Florida.
On August 10, Hurricane Franklin made landfall in eastern Mexico as a Category 1 storm. It rapidly weakened as it hit the highest terrain on August 11. It had estimated maximum winds of 85 mph.
Hurricane Gert is weakening as of this post, but it still generates waves for the east coasts of the U.S. and Canada. It is heading northward away from the east coast and continues to weaken over open waters.
It is expected that more storms will form before the end of the hurricane season in November. People in high-risk areas should be prepared for the effects of hurricanes, which could include flooding and power outages. If you live in areas that are prone to losing power, consider purchasing a standby diesel power generator.