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By Erin Smith

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is forecasting a “near to above normal” 2018 Atlantic hurricane season. The hurricane season officially begins June 1 and ends on November 30th.

Forecasters are predicting there will be 10 to 16 named storms this year of which 5 to 9 could become major hurricanes. The names for the 2018 storms are Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debby, Ernesto, Florence, Gordon, Helene, Isaac, Joyce, Kirk, Leslie, Michael, Nadine, Oscar, Patty, Rafael, Sara, Tony, Valerie, and William.

According to officials with NOAA, the potential of near-average sea temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea coupled with a potentially weak El Nino, are contributing factors to the projection.

The National Hurricane Center has also issued new products to improve the forecasting ability. They include the implementation of a smaller forecasting cone, improvement to the forecasting cone also known as the cone fo uncertainty and improvements in forecasting the approximate arrival time.



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