A hurricane info graphic: 2024 Hurricane Season Forecast - showing total named, number of hurricanes and Cat3+ hurricanes demonstrating the possible need to increase the names for hurricanes this season. June 1st is the beginning of meteorological summer. It’s also the beginning of the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season. This year, with El Nino transitioning to La Nina, along with the above normal ocean temperatures, it is expected to be brutal.

For the Atlantic basin, 25 named storms are expected. That is unprecedented when you consider the average is 12. In addition, the number of major hurricanes is expected to be double the average!  If this happens, we are going to have to have another list of names.

This month, tropical storm formation is most likely to occur in the Gulf of Mexico. Sea surface temperatures have to be above 80 degrees and this is where the temperature warms to that level first.  In July, the prime area for development is the Caribbean Sea. By August and September, the Eastern Atlantic Ocean is the area to watch.  This is typically where the strongest ones form. They have a lot of warm ocean water to “feed” on.

Along with La Nina, there is another fly in the ointment for 2024. It is called the North Atlantic Oscillatio, or NAO. The simplest explanation is that the big Bermuda High Pressure that centers itself in the Atlantic during summer will be stronger and perhaps a little farther east than is typical. This is bad news for us, as it will likely steer more systems west toward the Gulf Coast and Southeast Coast, possibly tracking them there with no way out. That would mean longer-lasting storms.

During an El Nino year, wind shear over the oceans can really take a bite out of hurricane strength and movement. Just the opposite will be the case this season. No wind shear, incredibly warm sea surface temperatures (ocean temps are currently at record or near record levels now) and the position of the Bermuda High, will all be contributing to an expected hyper-active season. In looking at the past La Nina hurricane seasons, there’s reason to be concerned.

As far as our June weather, the Climate Prediction Center thinks temperatures will continue to be above normal. However, there are too many variables regarding rainfall, so we are given equal chances of above or below normal. The average rainfall for us in June is 4.54 inches.