The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) now predicts that there will be more hurricanes in 2019 than previously expected, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said yesterday.
According to NOAA, 10 to 17 named storms are expected this year, compared to the previous projection of nine to 15.
Five to nine of those storms are expected to develop into hurricanes, and between two and four could become major hurricanes.
NEMA is cautioning Bahamians to be prepared.
NOAA announced last week that the new predictions for the busier season are due in part to the end of the weather phenomenon known as El Nino in the Pacific Ocean.
Gerry Bell, the lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, said, “El Nino typically suppresses Atlantic hurricane activity but now that it’s gone we could see a busier season ahead.”
He added, “This evolution, combined with the more conducive conditions associated with the ongoing high-activity era for Atlantic hurricanes that began in 1995, increases the likelihood of above-normal activity this year.”
According to NOAA, on average, there are 12 named storms during the Atlantic hurricane season. Six typically become hurricanes, with three becoming major hurricanes.