Colorado State University has decreased the severity of its forecast for this year’s Atlantic hurricane season. According to the latest update from the organization, colder than normal waters in the Atlantic, and increased odds of a weak El Niño developing in the next several months, means that 2018 will now likely have below-average hurricane activity. The revised prediction is a considerable decrease from previous forecasts issued in April and June.
This year, the University estimates that 2018 will have an additional four hurricanes, below the median of 6.5. The odds of a major hurricane making landfall in the United States is approximately 75 percent of the long-period average, according to the report. Additionally, the odds of a weak El Niño developing in the Atlantic have increased; if an El Niño does develop, it could lead to more vertical wind shear, tearing apart hurricanes as they are trying to develop and intensify. At the same time, the University warned that even one hurricane can cause damage, and so residents in hurricane-prone areas should be prepared all the same.
Colorado State University regularly publishes forecasts regarding the severity of the Atlantic hurricane season, which officially runs June through November. Last year’s forecast called for above-average activity, and that year saw a number of major storms impact popular tourism destinations in Florida, the Caribbean and the Gulf Coast, including Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.
While many Caribbean destinations were spared by last year’s hurricane season, some of those that were hit are still working to reopen major hotels and airports. Recently major Caribbean tourism officials joined Travel Agent for a roundtable on the region’s tourism comeback. You can view the discussion here.