2021 hurricane season forecast: Experts predict above-normal activity in Atlantic basin

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The 2021 Atlantic hurricane season is expected to be another busy one, according to forecasters with Colorado State University.

Meteorologist Dr. Philip Klotzbach and CSU released their 2021 extended-range forecast on Thursday saying “above normal activity” is expected this year.

The forecast predicts 17 named storms in 2021 with eight hurricanes – four of them major hurricanes. For comparison, the average number of named storms a year from 1981 through 2010 is been 12.1 while the average number of hurricanes is 6.4.

CSU predicts there will be 80 named storm days this hurricane season, 35 hurricane days and nine major hurricane days.

Forecaster with CSU also said they, “anticipate an above-average probability for major hurricanes making landfall along the continental United States coastline and in the Caribbean.”

But no matter what the forecast calls for, experts say you should be prepared.

“As is the case with all hurricane seasons, coastal residents are reminded that it only takes one hurricane making landfall to make it an active season for them,” CSU said. “They should prepare the same for every season, regardless of how much activity is predicted.”

On Twitter, Klotzbach said one reason for the above-average forecast is “the likely lack of [El Nino] this summer/fall. El Nino generally increases vertical wind shear in the Atlantic, tearing apart hurricanes.”

He also pointed to a warmer-than-normal subtropical Atlantic.

“The tropical Atlantic currently has near-average sea surface temperatures, while most of the subtropical Atlantic is warmer than normal,” CSU experts explained in their forecast.

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