Atlantic hurricane season

The Atlantic hurricane season is the period in a year from June through November when tropical cyclones form in the Atlantic Ocean, referred to in North American countries as hurricanes, tropical storms, or tropical depressions. In addition, there have been several storms over the years that have not been fully tropical and are categorized as subtropical depressions and subtropical storms. Even though subtropical storms and subtropical depressions are not technically as strong as tropical cyclones, the damages can still be devastating.

Atlantic tropical storm and hurricane frequency, by month[1]
Hurricane tracks from 1980 through 2014. Green tracks did not make landfall in US; yellow tracks made landfall but were not major hurricanes at the time; red tracks made landfall and were major hurricanes.

Worldwide, tropical cyclone activity peaks in late summer, when the difference between temperatures aloft and sea surface temperatures is the greatest. However, each tropical cyclone basin has its own seasonal patterns. On a worldwide scale, May is the least active month, while September is the most active.[2] In the Northern Atlantic Ocean, a distinct hurricane season occurs from June 1 to November 30, sharply peaking from late August through September;[2] the season's climatological peak of activity occurs around September 10 each season.[3] This is the norm, but in 1938, the Atlantic hurricane season started as early as January 3.

Tropical disturbances that reach tropical storm intensity are named from a pre-determined list. On average, 10.1 named storms occur each season, with an average of 5.9 becoming hurricanes and 2.5 becoming major hurricanes (Category 3 or greater). The most active season on record was 2020, during which 30 named tropical cyclones formed. Despite this, the 2005 season had more hurricanes, developing a record of 15 such storms. The least active season was 1914, with only one known tropical cyclone developing during that year.[4] The Atlantic hurricane season is a time when most tropical cyclones are expected to develop across the northern Atlantic Ocean. It is currently defined as the time frame from June 1 through November 30, though in the past the season was defined as a shorter time frame. During the season, regular tropical weather outlooks are issued by the National Hurricane Center, and coordination between the Weather Prediction Center and National Hurricane Center occurs for systems which have not yet formed but may develop during the next three to seven days. There is also a season within a season. The strongest time for hurricane activity seems to be between mid-August through mid-October. Wind factors and temperature and moisture are perfect during this time to encourage cyclonic activity.[5]

ConceptEdit

 
The timing of the hurricane season was an important factor for maritime trade and naval activities.

The understanding that Atlantic hurricanes are most commonplace during a certain period of the year has been long recognized. Historical delineations of the Atlantic hurricane season varied but generally covered some part of the estival and autumnal months.[6] Some early descriptions of the season's bounds theorized that the timing of the full moon or the moon's phases as a whole could be used to more precisely delineate the hurricane season.[7][6] In the second volume of Voyages and Descriptions (published in 1700), English explorer and naturalist William Dampier observed that hurricanes in the Caribbean Sea were expected in July, August, and September.[8] Mariners in the 18th century generally regarded the period from July to the end of October as the "hurricane season" based on the frequency of storms striking the Caribbean islands and the trajectories of ships traversing the Atlantic.[9][7]

The hurricane season was also an important influence on European naval operations within the West Indies, forcing the movement of materiel to be expedited before its onset or delayed until its end.[10][11][12] English admiral Edward Vernon described the "hurricane months" of August and September within the West Indies as a particularly vulnerable time for maritime logistics; Vernon argued that the most optimal time for a fleet to be dispatched from Great Britain to attack Spanish assets in the Americas was August or September, in part because such ships would more likely avoid hurricanes by the time they reached the West Indies.[13] American geographer Jedidiah Morse defined the hurricane season as the months of August, September, and October in his treatise The American Universal Geography.[14] American meteorologist William Charles Redfield defined the hurricane season as lasting from July 15 to October 15, citing the timeframe during which some insurance underwriters raised premiums in response to the increased likelihood of hurricanes.[6][15] Based on a catalog of 355 storms between 1493–1855 in the North Atlantic compiled by M. André Poëy, W. H. Rosser described the months of July, August, September, and October as comprising the "true hurricane season of the West Indies" in his 1876 book The Law of Storms Considered Practically.[16]

Still, the hurricane season will not allow itself to be 'cribbed, cabined and confined' within the limits of three short months, and skips along whenever its blithe fancy takes it, having a way of turning up at the most unexpected seasons...

 
In the early 1900s, the hurricane season served as the time in which U.S. Weather Bureau observations in the Caribbean were taken more frequently.

The concept of the hurricane season took on a more practical significance in forecasting operations as the United States Weather Bureau began to extend its weather prediction efforts and data collection into the tropics. In 1882, the bureau briefly considered an effort to adopt special hurricane signals between July and October 20 to emphasize the danger of such storms during that period, but dropped the effort due to a lack of funding.[17] When the U.S. Weather Bureau built a network of weather observatories in the Caribbean in 1898, these sites telegraphed weather observations at 8 a.m. daily to the bureau's regional headquarters in Havana, Cuba, during the hurricane season; this season was defined as lasting from the beginning of June through October.[18][19][20] By 1907, these stations in the West Indies operated within a hurricane season defined as beginning on June 15 and ending on November 15.[21] The starting date of these regular reports was moved back to June 1 by 1915.[22] In 1917, an increase in funding for the U.S. Weather Bureau's observing networks in the Caribbean region led to these stations reporting twice daily during a hurricane season expanded to cover the June 1 to November 30 period.[23][24] This delineation was maintained when the bureau (in cooperation with United Fruit Company) began to broadcast special weather bulletins for Caribbean shipping during the hurricane season in 1922, providing information on active hurricanes and warnings twice daily.[25]

The basic concept of an official hurricane season began during 1935,[26] when dedicated wire circuits known as hurricane circuits began to be set up along the Gulf and Atlantic coasts,[27] a process completed by 1955.[28] It was originally the time frame when the tropics were monitored routinely for tropical cyclone activity, and was originally defined as from June 15 through October 31.[29] Over the years, the beginning date was shifted back to June 1, while the end date was shifted to November 15,[27] before settling at November 30 by 1965.[30][31] This was when hurricane reconnaissance planes were sent out to fly across the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico on a routine basis to look for potential tropical cyclones, in the years before the continuous weather satellite era.[29] Since regular satellite surveillance began, hurricane hunter aircraft fly only into storm areas which are first spotted by satellite imagery.[32] The six-month official hurricane season established in 1965 by the National Hurricane Center (NHC) remains the current delineation of the Atlantic hurricane season.[33] These bounds contain over 97 percent of Atlantic tropical cyclone activity. While this definition was chosen in part to make it easier for the public to remember the timing of hurricanes, storms have often formed outside the official seasonal bounds.[34][35] Following several consecutive years of Atlantic tropical cyclones developing before the official June 1 start date, the World Meteorological Organization recommended in 2021 that the NHC assess moving the start date to May 15.[36] In response, the NHC formed a team to develop quantiative criteria to evaluate extending the seasonal bounds.[37][38] The agency's routine tropical weather outlooks, historically issued during the hurricane season beginning on June 1, were instead started on May 15 beginning in 2021.[39]

OperationsEdit

During the hurricane season, the National Hurricane Center routinely issues their Tropical Weather Outlook product, which identifies areas of concern within the tropics which could develop into tropical cyclones. If systems occur outside the defined hurricane season, special Tropical Weather Outlooks will be issued.[40] Routine coordination occurs at 1700 UTC each day between the Weather Prediction Center and National Hurricane Center to identify systems for the pressure maps three to seven days into the future within the tropics, and points for existing tropical cyclones six to seven days into the future.[41] Possible tropical cyclones are depicted with a closed isobar, while systems with less certainty to develop are depicted as "spot lows" with no isobar surrounding them.

HURDATEdit

The North Atlantic hurricane database, or HURDAT, is the database for all tropical storms and hurricanes for the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea, including those that have made landfall in the United States. The original database of six-hourly positions and intensities were put together in the 1960s in support of the Apollo space program to help provide statistical track forecast guidance. In the intervening years, this database — which is now freely and easily accessible on the Internet from the National Hurricane Center's (NHC) webpage — has been utilized for a wide variety of uses: climatic change studies, seasonal forecasting, risk assessment for county emergency managers, analysis of potential losses for insurance and business interests, intensity forecasting techniques and verification of official and various model predictions of track and intensity.

HURDAT was not designed with all of these uses in mind when it was first put together and not all of them may be appropriate given its original motivation. HURDAT contains numerous systematic as well as some random errors in the database. Additionally, analysis techniques have changed over the years at NHC as their understanding of tropical cyclones has developed, leading to biases in the historical database. Another difficulty in applying the hurricane database to studies concerned with landfalling events is the lack of exact location, time and intensity at hurricane landfall.

Re-analysis projectEdit

HURDAT is regularly updated annually to reflect the previous season's activity. The older portion of the database has been regularly revised since 2001. The first time in 2001 led to the addition of tropical cyclone tracks for the years 1851 to 1885. The second time was in October 2002 when Hurricane Andrew (August 1992) was upgraded to a Category 5. Recent efforts into uncovering undocumented historical hurricanes in the late 19th and 20th centuries by various researchers have greatly increased our knowledge of these past events. Tropical storms from 1851 to 1970 have already been reanalyzed with most recently, re-analysis of tropical storms from 1961 to 1965 being completed and integrated into HURDAT database in November 2019, and re-analysis of tropical storms from 1966 to 1970 being completed and integrated into HURDAT database in January 2022.[42] Possible changes for the years 1971 onward are not yet incorporated into the HURDAT database. Due to these issues, a re-analysis of the Atlantic hurricane database is being attempted that will be completed in three years.

In addition to the groundbreaking work by Partagas[needs context], additional analyses, digitization and quality control of the data was carried out by researchers at the NOAA Hurricane Research Division funded by the NOAA Office of Global Programs.[43]

The National Hurricane Center's Best Track Change Committee has approved changes for a few recent cyclones, such as Hurricane Andrew. Official changes to the Atlantic hurricane database are approved by the National Hurricane Center Best Track Change Committee.

1494–1850 (pre-HURDAT era)Edit

Period Seasons Individual years
Pre-19th century Pre-17th century (pre 1600), 17th century (1600s), 18th century (1700s) 1780
1800–1850 1800–1809, 1810–1819, 1820–1829, 1830–1839, 1840–1849 1842, 1850

1851–1899 (within HURDAT data)Edit

1850sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1851 6 3 1 36.24 24  3  "San Agapito"  3  "San Agapito" First Atlantic hurricane season to be included in the HURDAT.
1852 5 5 1 73.28 100+  3  "Great Mobile"  3  "Great Mobile" One of three seasons in which all known cyclones became hurricanes.
1853 8 4 2 76.49 40  4  Three Earliest known Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale.
1854 5 3 1 31.00 30+  3  "South Carolina"  3  "South Carolina"
1855 5 4 1 18.12 Unknown  3  "Middle Gulf Shore"  3  "Middle Gulf Shore"
1856 6 4 2 48.94 200+  4  "Last Island"  3  "Southeastern States"
 4  "Last Island"
1857 4 3 0 46.84 424  2  SS Central America Disaster
 2  Four
 2  SS Central America Disaster
1858 6 6 0 44.79 None  2  Three
 2  Six
 2  Hurricane Three
1859 8 7 1 55.73 Numerous  3  Six  1  Hurricane Five
 3  Hurricane Six
 1  Hurricane Eight

1860sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1860 7 6 1 62.06 60+  4  One  4  Hurricane One
1861 8 6 0 49.71 22+  2  One
 2  Three
 1  "Key West"
 1  "Expedition"
1862 6 3 0 46.03 3  2  Two
 2  Three
1863 9 5 0 50.35 90  2  "Amanda"  2  "Amanda"
1864 5 3 0 26.55 None  1  One
 1  Three
 1  Five
1865 7 3 0 49.13 326  2  Four
 2  Seven
 2  Hurricane Four
1866 7 6 1 83.65 383  4  "Nassau"  4  "Nassau"
1867 9 6 1 59.97 811  3  "San Narciso"  3  "San Narciso"
1868 4 3 0 34.65 2  2  One
 2  Two
 2  Four
1869 10 7 1 51.02 38  3  New England Gale  3  New England Gale
 2  Saxby Gale

1870sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1870 11 10 2 87.80 2,052  3  Four  3  "First Key West"
 2  "Second Key West"
1871 8 6 2 88.39 30  3  Three
 3  "Santa Juana"
 3  Hurricane Three
 3  "Santa Juana"
1872 5 4 0 65.38 Unknown  2  Two
1873 5 3 2 69.47 626  3  "Central Florida"  3  "Central Florida"
1874 7 4 0 47.05 Unknown  2  Seven
1875 6 5 1 72.48 800  3  "Indianola"  3  "Indianola"
1876 5 4 2 56.05 19  3  "San Felipe"  3  "San Felipe"
 3  "Cuba-South Florida"
1877 8 3 1 73.36 34  3  "Florida Panhandle"  3  "Florida Panhandle"
1878 12 10 1 180.85 108  4  Seven  2  Gale of 1878
1879 8 6 2 63.63 47  3  "Louisiana"  3  "Great Beaufort"
 3  "Louisiana"

1880sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1880 11 9 2 131.08 133  4  Eight  4  Hurricane Two
1881 7 4 0 59.25 700  2  "Georgia"  2  "Georgia"
1882 6 5 2 59.47 6  4  "Cuba"  3  "Pensacola"
 4  "Cuba"
1883 4 3 2 66.70 236  3  Two  3  "Bahamas-North Carolina"
1884 4 4 1 72.06 8  3  Two
1885 8 6 1 58.30 25  2  Two
1886 12 10 4 166.17 200+  4  "Indianola"  4  "Indianola"
 3  "Cuba"
 3  "Texas-Louisiana"
Seven hurricanes struck the United States, the most during a single year.[44]
1887 19 11 2 181.26 2  3  Seven Record five off-season storms.
1888 9 6 2 84.95 924  3  "San Gil"  3  "Louisiana"
 3  "San Gil"
1889 9 6 0 104.04 40  2  Six

1890sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1890 4 2 1 33.35 14  3  Three
1891 10 7 1 116.11 700+  3  "Martinique"  3  "Martinique"
1892 9 5 0 115.84 16  2  Three
 2  Five
 2  Seven
1893 12 10 5 231.15 4,028  4  "Cheniere Caminada"  3  "San Roque"
 3  "New York"
 3  "Sea Islands"
 3  "Charleston"
 4  "Cheniere Caminada"
Two hurricanes caused more than 2,000 deaths in the United States.
Four simultaneous hurricanes on August 22, one of two times on record.
1894 7 5 4 135.42 200+  4  Six  3  "Florida Panhandle"
1895 6 2 0 68.77 56  2  Two
1896 7 6 2 136.08 286  3  "Cedar Keys"  3  "San Ramón"
 3  "Cedar Keys"
1897 6 3 0 54.54 262  2  One
1898 11 5 1 113.24 562  4  "Georgia"  4  "Georgia"
1899 9 5 2 151.03 4,167  4  "San Ciríaco"  4  "San Ciríaco" The San Ciríaco hurricane was the longest-lasting Atlantic hurricane on record

1900sEdit

NOTE: In the following tables, all estimates of damage costs are expressed in contemporaneous US dollars (USD).

1900sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1900 7 3 2 83.35 8,000+ $35.4M  4  "Galveston"  4  "Galveston" The Galveston hurricane was the deadliest disaster in the United States.
1901 13 6 0 98.98 35-40 $1M  2  Seven  1  "Louisiana"
1902 5 3 0 32.65 5 Unknown  2  Four
1903 10 7 1 102.07 222 $18.5M  3  "Jamaica"  3  "Jamaica"
 1  "Florida"
 2  "New Jersey"
1904 5 3 0 30.35 112 $2.5M  1  Two  1  One
1905 5 1 1 28.38 8 Unknown  3  Four
1906 11 6 3 162.88 381 $25.4M  4  Four  3  "Mississippi"
 3  "Florida Keys"
1907 5 0 0 13.06 None Unknown  TS  One One of two seasons with no recorded hurricanes, the other being 1914.
1908 10 6 1 95.11 37 Unknown  3  Six Includes the only known March tropical cyclone in the basin.
1909 11 6 4 93.34 4,673 $77.3M  3  "Grand Isle"  3  "Velasco"
 3  "Monterrey"
 3  "Grand Isle"
 3  "Florida Keys"
 2  "Greater Antilles"

1910sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1910 5 3 1 63.90 100 $1.25M  4  "Cuba"  4  "Cuba"
1911 6 3 0 34.29 27 $3M  2  Three
1912 7 4 1 57.26 116 $1.6M  3  "Jamaica"  3  "Jamaica"
1913 6 4 0 35.60 5 $4M  1  Four
1914 1 0 0 2.53 0 Unknown  TS  One Least active season on record.
One of two seasons with no recorded hurricanes, along with 1907.
1915 6 5 4 130.10 675 $63M  4  "New Orleans"  4  "Galveston"
 4  "New Orleans"
Two Category 4 hurricanes made landfall in the United States.
1916 15 10 5 144.01 31 $5.9M  4  "Texas"  3  "Gulf Coast"
 3  "Charleston"
 4  "Texas"
1917 4 2 2 60.67 76 $170,000  4  "Nueva Gerona"  4  "Nueva Gerona"
1918 6 4 1 39.87 55 $5M  3  "Louisiana"  3  "Louisiana"
1919 5 2 1 55.04 828 $22M  4  "Florida Keys"  4  "Florida Keys"

1920sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1920 5 4 0 29.81 1 $1.5M  2  "Louisiana"  2  "Louisiana"
1921 7 5 2 86.53 6 $36.5M  4  "Tampa Bay"  3  "San Pedro"
 4  "Tampa Bay"
1922 5 3 1 54.52 105 $2.3M  3  Two
1923 9 4 1 49.31 15 $1.3M  3  Five
1924 11 5 2 100.19 179 Unknown  5  "Cuba"  5  "Cuba" First official Category 5 Atlantic hurricane on the Saffir–Simpson scale.
1925 4 2 0 7.25 59+ $19.9M  1  One  TS  "Florida"
1926 11 8 6 229.56 1,448 $247.4M  4  "Miami"  4  "Nassau"
 3  "Nova Scotia"
 3  "Louisiana"
 4  "Miami"
 4  "Havana–Bermuda"
1927 8 4 1 56.48 184 Unknown  3  "Nova Scotia"  3  "Nova Scotia"
1928 6 4 1 83.48 4,289 $102M  5  "Okeechobee"  5  "Okeechobee"
1929 5 3 1 48.07 62 $10.0M  4  "Bahamas"  4  "Bahamas"

1930sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1930 3 2 2 49.77 8,000 $50M  4  "San Zenón"  4  "San Zenón" The San Zenón hurricane was the fifth deadliest on record.
1931 13 3 1 47.84 2,502 $7.5M  4  "British Honduras"  4  "British Honduras"
1932 15 6 4 169.66 3,315 $37M  5  "Cuba"  4  "Freeport"
 5  "Bahamas"
 4  "San Ciprián"
 5  "Cuba"
Only season with a Category 5 hurricane in November.
1933 20 11 6 258.57 651 $86.6M  5  "Tampico"  4  "Chesapeake–Potomac"
 5  "Cuba–Brownsville"
 4  "Treasure Coast"
 4  "Outer Banks"
 5  "Tampico"
Fourth most active season on record.
1934 13 7 1 79.07 2,017 $4.26M  3  Thirteen
1935 8 5 3 106.21 2,604 $12.5M  5  "Labor Day"  5  "Labor Day"
 4  "Cuba"
Most intense landfalling Atlantic hurricane known to date ("Labor Day").
1936 17 7 1 99.78 5 $1.23M  3  "Mid-Atlantic"
1937 11 4 1 65.85 0 Unknown  3  Six
1938 9 4 2 77.58 ~700 $290.3M  5  "New England"  5  "New England" Earliest-starting season on record (January 3).
1939 6 3 1 43.68 5 Unknown  4  Five

1940sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest storm Major landfalling storms Notes
1940 9 6 0 67.79 101 $4.7M  2  "New England"  2  "South Carolina"
1941 6 4 3 51.77 63 $10M  3  "Florida"  3  "Texas"
 4  "Nicaragua"
 3  "Florida"
1942 11 4 1 62.49 17 $30.6M  3  "Matagorda"  3  "Matagorda"
1943 10 5 2 94.01 19 $17.2M  4  Three  2  "Surprise" First year of hurricane hunters.
1944 14 8 3 104.45 1,153 $202M  5  "Great Atlantic"  5  "Great Atlantic"
 4  "Cuba–Florida"
1945 11 5 2 63.42 80 $80M  4  "Homestead"  3  "Texas"
 4  "Homestead"
1946 7 3 0 19.61 5 $5.2M  2  Four  2  "Florida"
1947 10 5 2 88.49 94 $145.3M  4  "Fort Lauderdale"  4  "Fort Lauderdale" (George)
 2  "Cape Sable" (King)
First year of internal Atlantic tropical cyclone naming.[45]
1948 10 6 4 94.98 94 $30.9M  4  "Florida"  4  "Florida" (Easy)
 3  "Miami" (Fox)
1949 16 7 3 96.45 3 $58.2M  4  "Florida"  4  "Florida"
 2  "Texas"

1950sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest storm Retired names Notes
1950 16 11 6 211.28 20 $37M  4  Dog None Record-breaking 8 tropical storms in October.
1951 12 8 3 126.33 257 $80M  4  Easy None
1952 11 5 2 69.08 607 $3.75M  4  Fox None Includes the only known February tropical cyclone in the basin.
1953 14 7 3 98.51 1 $6M  5  Carol None First year of female names for storms.[46]
One of only 4 seasons to have both a preseason and postseason storm.
1954 16 7 3 110.88 1,069 $752M  4  Hazel  3  Carol
 3  Edna
 4  Hazel
Includes Alice, one of two storms in the basin to span two calendar years.[47]
1955 13 9 4 158.17 1,518 $1.2bn  5  Janet  4  Connie
 2  Diane
 4  Ione
 5  Janet
1956 12 4 1 56.67 76 $67.8M  3  Betsy None
1957 8 3 2 78.66 513 $152.5M  4  Carrie  3  Audrey One of only two seasons to feature a major hurricane in June.
1958 12 7 3 109.69 41 $12M  4  Helene None
1959 14 7 2 77.11 59 $23.3M  4  Gracie  4  Gracie
Total 128 68 29 1096.38 4,161 $2.54bn Janet 9 names

1960sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest
storm
Retired
names
Notes
1960 8 4 2 72.90 455 $442.34M  4  Donna  4  Donna
1961 12 8 5 188.89 345 $392M  5  Hattie  4  Carla
 5  Hattie
Two Category 5 hurricanes.
Lowest number of named storms for an extremely active season.
1962 7 4 0 50.45 39 >$4.88M  2  Ella None
1963 10 7 3 112.09 7,225 $589M  4  Flora  4  Flora Flora was the sixth-deadliest hurricane on record.
1964 13 7 5 153.04 261 $605M  4  Cleo  4  Cleo
 4  Dora
 4  Hilda
1965 10 4 1 86.74 76 $1.45bn  4  Betsy  4  Betsy
1966 15 7 3 138.68 1,094 $410M  5  Inez  5  Inez One of only two seasons to feature a major hurricane in June.
1967 15 6 1 125.43 64 $217M  5  Beulah  5  Beulah First hurricane season in the modern satellite era.
Features the highest number of tropical depressions in a season at the time.
1968 9 5 0 46.60 10 $10M  2  Gladys None There was one subtropical storm with Category 1 hurricane strength.
1969 18 12 3 149.25 364 $1.7bn  5  Camille  5  Camille Tied for the second most hurricanes in a season on record.
Total 105 63 25 1124.09 9,933 $5.82bn Camille 11 names

1970sEdit

Year TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest
storm
Retired
names
Notes
1970 14 7 2 66.63 71 $454M  4  Celia  4  Celia First season of a 24-year period of decreased activity in the Atlantic (-AMO)
Current extent of the reanalysis project as of January 2022
1971 13 6 1 96.53 45 $213M  5  Edith None Includes first documented Hurricane to cross Central America, Irene.
1972 7 3 0 35.61 122 $2.1bn  2  Betty  1  Agnes Includes three subtropical storms.
1973 8 4 1 47.85 15 $18M  3  Ellen None
1974 11 4 2 68.13 8,260+ $1.97bn  4  Carmen  4  Carmen
 2  Fifi
Includes four subtropical storms.
Fifi was the fourth-deadliest hurricane on record.
1975 9 6 3 76.06 80 $100M  4  Gladys  3  Eloise
1976 10 6 2 84.17 72 $100M  3  Belle None Includes two subtropical storms.
1977 6 5 1 25.32 10 $10M  5  Anita  5  Anita Features the strongest Atlantic hurricane to strike Mexico.
1978 12 5 2 63.22 37 $45M  4  Greta  4  Greta Includes the January subtropical storm in the Atlantic.
1979 9 5 2 92.92 2,118 $4.3bn  5  David  5  David
 4  Frederic
First year for alternating male/female names.
Includes one subtropical storm of Category 1 strength.
Total 96 49 16 657 10,830+ $9.31bn David 9 names

1980sEdit

Year TC TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest
storm
Retired
names
Notes
1980 15 11 9 2 148.94 256 $1bn  5  Allen  5  Allen Includes the storm with the highest sustained winds attained so far in the Atlantic.
1981 18 12 7 3 100.38 10 $45M  4  Harvey None
1982 9 6 2 1 31.50 141 $100M  4  Debby None
1983 7 4 3 1 17.40 22 $2.6bn  3  Alicia  3  Alicia Least active hurricane season in the satellite era.
1984 17 13 5 1 84.30 35 $66M  4  Diana None
1985 13 11 7 3 87.98 241 $4.5bn  4  Gloria  3  Elena
 4  Gloria
Hurricane Kate struck Florida on November 21, the latest United States hurricane landfall.
1986 10 6 4 0 35.79 70 $57M  2  Earl None
1987 14 7 3 1 34.36 10 $90M  3  Emily None
1988 19 12 5 3 102.99 550 $7bn  5  Gilbert  5  Gilbert
 4  Joan
Included the strongest hurricane on record until 2005
First hurricane since 1978 to cross Central America
1989 15 11 7 2 135.13 112 $10.7bn  5  Hugo  5  Hugo
Total 137 93 52 17 778.71 1,447 $26.2bn Gilbert 7 names

1990sEdit

Year TC TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest
storm
Retired
names
Notes
1990 16 14 8 1 96.80 116 $150M  3  Gustav  2  Diana
 1  Klaus
No tropical storms or hurricanes made landfall in the United States.
1991 12 8 4 2 35.54 30 $2.5bn  4  Claudette  3  Bob
1992 9 7 4 1 76.22 66 $27bn  5  Andrew  5  Andrew Hurricane Andrew was the costliest U.S. hurricane until 2005.
1993 10 8 4 1 38.67 274 $271M  3  Emily None
1994 12 7 3 0 32.02 1,184 $1.56bn  2  Florence None Last season of a 24-year period of decreased activity in the Atlantic (-AMO).
1995 21 19 11 5 227.10 115 $9.3bn  4  Opal  4  Luis
 3  Marilyn
 4  Opal
 3  Roxanne
Tied for fifth most active season on record (with 1887, 2010, 2011 and 2012).
First season of an ongoing period of increased activity in the Atlantic (+AMO).
1996 13 13 9 6 166.18 179 $3.8bn  4  Edouard  1  Cesar
 3  Fran
 4  Hortense
Highest number of major hurricanes at the time.
1997 9 8 3 1 40.93 11 $110M  3  Erika None
1998 14 14 10 3 181.77 12,000+ $12.2bn  5  Mitch  4  Georges
 5  Mitch
Four simultaneous hurricanes on September 26, the first time since 1893.
Mitch was the deadliest hurricane in over 200 years.
1999 16 12 8 5 176.53 465 $5.9bn  4  Floyd  4  Floyd
 4  Lenny
Most Category 4 hurricanes on record, later tied by 2005 and 2020.
Total 132 110 64 25 1071.75 14,440 $62.7bn Mitch 15 names

2000sEdit

NOTE: In the following tables, all estimates of damage costs are expressed in contemporaneous US dollars (USD).

2000sEdit

Year TC TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest
storm
Retired names Notes
2000 19 15 8 3 119.14 105 $1.3bn  4  Keith  4  Keith
2001 17 15 9 4 110.32 153 $11.4bn  4  Michelle  TS  Allison
 4  Iris
 4  Michelle
Allison was the first Atlantic tropical storm to have its name retired.
2002 14 12 4 2 67.99 50 $2.5bn  3  Isidore  3  Isidore
 4  Lili
Record-tying 8 named storms formed in September.
2003 21 16 7 3 176.84 93 $6.3bn  5  Isabel  4  Fabian
 5  Isabel
 2  Juan
Includes 3 off-season storms.
2004 17 15 9 6 226.88 3,260 $61.2bn  5  Ivan  4  Charley
 4  Frances
 5  Ivan
 3  Jeanne
Record-tying 8 named storms forming in August.
2005 31 28 15 7 250.13 3,912 $171.8bn  5  Wilma  4  Dennis
 5  Katrina
 5  Rita
 1  Stan
 5  Wilma
Second-costliest hurricane season on record.
Holds the records for most hurricanes, major hurricanes, and Category 5 hurricanes.
Most retired names.
The first year to use the Greek alphabet, later also used in 2020.
Includes 1 subtropical storm and 1 subtropical depression.
2006 10 10 5 2 78.54 14 $504.4M  3  Gordon
 3  Helene
None
2007 17 15 6 2 73.89 478 $3.4bn  5  Dean  5  Dean
 5  Felix
 1  Noel
First season on record with two hurricanes landfalling at Category 5 intensity (Dean and Felix).
2008 17 16 8 5 145.72 1,073 $49.4bn  4  Ike  4  Gustav
 4  Ike
 4  Paloma
Only year on record in which a major hurricane existed in every month from July through November.
2009 11 9 3 2 52.58 9 $58M  4  Bill None
Total 174 151 74 36 1302.02 9,146 $307.9bn Wilma 24 names

2010sEdit

Year TC TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest
storm
Retired names Notes
2010 21 19 12 5 165.48 392 $7.4bn  4  Igor  4  Igor
 2  Tomas
Fifth most active season on record (tied with 1887, 1995, 2011 and 2012).
Tied for second most hurricanes in a season with twelve.
2011 20 19 7 4 126.30 112 $17.4bn  4  Ophelia  3  Irene Fifth most active season on record (tied with 1887, 1995, 2010 and 2012).
2012 19 19 10 2 132.63 355 $72.3bn  3  Sandy  3  Sandy Fifth most active season on record (tied with 1887, 1995, 2010 and 2011).
2013 15 14 2 0 36.12 54 $1.5bn  1  Humberto  1  Ingrid Includes one unnamed subtropical storm in December.
2014 9 8 6 2 66.73 21 $371.6M  4  Gonzalo None Featured the fewest tropical storms since 1997.
2015 12 11 4 2 62.69 89 $813.9M  4  Joaquin  TS  Erika
 4  Joaquin
First season of a 7-year period of early season activity in the Atlantic.
2016 16 15 7 4 141.25 736 ≥$17.5bn  5  Matthew  5  Matthew
 3  Otto
Record for earliest formation of 4th named storm (Danielle).
2017 18 17 10 6 224.87 3,364 ≥$294.7bn  5  Maria  4  Harvey
 5  Irma
 5  Maria
 1  Nate
Costliest hurricane season on record.
Earliest Main Development Region named storm on record (Bret).
2018 16 15 8 2 132.58 172 ≥$50.5bn  5  Michael  4  Florence
 5  Michael
Includes a record seven storms that were subtropical at one point.
2019 20 18 6 3 132.20 118 $11.6bn  5  Dorian  5  Dorian Record fifth consecutive season for a storm to develop before the official start.
Includes two subtropical storms.
Record fourth consecutive season with a Category 5 hurricane.
Total 166 155 72 30 1220.86 5,413 $474.1bn Maria 15 names

2020sEdit

Year TC TS H MH ACE Deaths Damage Strongest
storm
Retired
names
Notes
2020 31 30 14 7 180.37 ≥417 >$51.1bn  4  Iota  4  Laura
 4  Eta
 4  Iota
Most active season in terms of tropical depressions and named storms.
Holds record for the earliest formation date for the third, sixth, and every storm after.
Second and final season after 2005 to use the Greek alphabet.
Tied with 2005 for a record 7 tropical cyclones that became major hurricanes.
Record-breaking fifth consecutive above-normal season.
Record sixth straight season with at least one pre-season storm.
2021 21 21 7 4 145.55 195 $80.7bn  4  Sam  4  Ida Record seventh consecutive season for a storm to develop before the official start (Ana).
Third most active season on record.
Record for the earliest formation date for the fifth storm (Elsa).

Record-breaking sixth consecutive above-normal season.

2022 16 14 8 2 95.1 336 $53.5b  4  Fiona TBD Season is still in progress.
First season since 2014 not to have a pre-season named storm.
First season since 1996 to feature more than one Atlantic–Pacific crossover hurricane (Bonnie and Julia).
Featured three November hurricanes.
Total 68 65 29 13 421.02 ≥948 >$185bn Iota 4 names

Number of tropical storms and hurricanes per seasonEdit

A 2011 study analyzing one of the main sources of hurricanes - the African easterly wave (AEW) - found that the change in AEWs is closely linked to increased activity of intense hurricanes in the North Atlantic. The synoptic concurrence of AEWs in driving the dynamics of the Sahel greening also appears to increase tropical cyclogenesis over the North Atlantic.[48]


 
The 20-year average of the number of annual Category 4 and 5 hurricanes in the Atlantic region has approximately doubled since the year 2000.[49]

See alsoEdit

Parent topicsEdit

Atlantic hurricane topicsEdit

Other tropical cyclone basinsEdit

ReferencesEdit

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