2019 hurricane season may become more severe
Federal forecasters have changed their prediction for the remainder of this Atlantic hurricane season, which runs through the end of October.
Gerry Bell, lead hurricane forecaster for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said Thursday that the el Nino in the Pacific, which puts a damper on hurricane activity here, has now dissipated.
Bell adds that conditions in the Tropical Atlantic off West Africa have also been ramping up.
He says there's now a 45% chance of an above-normal hurricane season, with possibly 10 to 17 named storms, and five to nine hurricanes.
"These ranges include the two named storms to date. The total number of named storms and hurricanes has increased from the May outlook. While the number of major hurricanes stays the same," he said Thursday.
Commenting on the science behind the outlook, Bell said they "have a firm scientific foundation, which includes rigorous analysis of how oceanic and atmospheric conditions are set up to influence storm development and also of how these conditions are likely to evolve through the season."
Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5