Outlook for 2017

Hurricanes: Storms like no other

Posted: Updated:
Image of a Hurricane from space from the Farmer Almanac. Image of a Hurricane from space from the Farmer Almanac.
List of the names for Hurricanes for the 2017 Atlantic season List of the names for Hurricanes for the 2017 Atlantic season
List of names for Hurricanes for 2017 for the Pacific List of names for Hurricanes for 2017 for the Pacific
(3TV/CBS 5) -

 A truly majestic storm, hurricanes are like no other storm on earth. We can’t prevent hurricanes from forming, but through history, we have learned to better predict the storms' intensity, paths and destruction.

The Atlantic season runs June 1 through November 30. This year NOAA is predicting an above-average season in the Atlantic. with 11 to 17 named storms, with four or five possibly becoming hurricanes and up to four of them possibly becoming major hurricanes.

A hurricane is a warm-core tropical cyclone in which the maximum sustained surface winds are 75 mph or greater.  A major hurricane is classified as those with sustained winds of 111 mph and higher.

Scientists and meteorologists are looking our El Nino weather pattern when considering these predictions. The weak El Nino in the Pacific typically translates into weak vertical wind shears in the Atlantic. It also means warmer ocean temperatures on the surface. Together, these conditions indicate a strong likelihood of increased hurricane activity.

For the Pacific season, an average season in this region typically has 15 tropical storms and about eight hurricanes. This season with warm waters encouraging storm development, meteorologists are predicting another hyperactive season.

While many of the tropical systems will remain over the open ocean with little or no impact on land, three landfalls are forecast on the Mexico coastline. 

That could also lead to at least two storms impacting the United State. That means flooding rain could be possible from Southern California to Texas. 

Hurricanes and Tropical Storms in the Eastern Pacific are one of Arizona’s main sources for rainfall. They infuse our monsoon.

Our largest amount of rainfall from a tropical storm was from Nora in 1997 in the Harquahala Mountains with 12.01 inches. In 2014 Norbert produced 6.09 inches of rainfall in the city of Chandler. 

[SPECIAL SECTION: Weather blogs]

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