Sea temperatures present storm uncertainty

Make text smaller Make text larger

  • Major damage: hurricanes Irma and Maria wreaked havoc across the Caribbean last year, while the US was also badly impacted by Harvey. Forecasters predict a near-normal hurricane season this year, but sea-surface temperature variations are causing some uncertainty

    Major damage: hurricanes Irma and Maria wreaked havoc across the Caribbean last year, while the US was also badly impacted by Harvey. Forecasters predict a near-normal hurricane season this year, but sea-surface temperature variations are causing some uncertainty


The North Atlantic hurricane season is predicted to be near-normal this year, but warmer sea-surface temperatures closer to the US and in the Gulf of Mexico are presenting some uncertainty.

Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria made last year’s hurricane season the most expensive in history, causing $230 billion of damage in the US and Caribbean. Insured losses were estimated at $80 billion by Aon Benfield’s Impact Forecasting team.

A number of agencies have presented predictions for how this year’s hurricane season might unfold, and sea-surface temperature variations point to a degree of uncertainty, particularly as there are warmer than average waters near the US mainland.

The hurricane season officially lasts from June 1 to November 30.

James Waller, a research meteorologist for Guy Carpenter, in a report, noted that predictions from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, UK Met Office and Colorado State University all suggest a near-normal hurricane season with around 12 to 14 named storms, of which six or seven are predicted to reach hurricane strength.

The NOAA noted uncertainty related to possible El Niño conditions and sea-surface temperatures through August to October — the peak of the hurricane season.

Mr Waller said key factors include cooler than average sea-surface temperatures in the far northern and eastern Atlantic and key areas of the Atlantic tropics and subtropics. He noted: “Sea-surface temperatures are warmer than average for areas adjacent to the US mainland and western Gulf of Mexico; this warrants some caution for potential development close to the mainland as the season unfolds.”

You must be registered or signed-in to post comment or to vote.

Published Jun 28, 2018 at 8:00 am (Updated Jun 27, 2018 at 9:20 pm)

Sea temperatures present storm uncertainty

What you
Need to
Know
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon

  • Take Our Poll

    • "Who do you think will win the World Cup?"
    • Argentina
    • 5%
    • Belgium
    • 12%
    • Brazil
    • 20%
    • England
    • 16%
    • France
    • 6%
    • Germany
    • 9%
    • Portugal
    • 25%
    • Spain
    • 8%
    • Total Votes: 4375
    • Poll Archive

    Today's Obituaries