New hurricane forecast released as peak season approaches

The official hurricane season begins June 1, but Mother Nature really turns up the heat beginning in mid-August when tropical cyclone activity typically spikes.

But Colorado State University has some reassuring news today in its August updated forecast that continues to call for a below normal season.

RELATED: The El Niño forecast has changed, what it means for hurricane season

Hurricane season typically begins to peak in mid-August.

CSU is predicting nine more named storms through November, three hurricanes, and one major hurricane of Category 3 or higher.  Today’s forecast does not include sub-tropical storm Alberto, or hurricanes Beryl and Chris.

A normal season has 12 named storms, six hurricanes and three major hurricanes.

STORM 2018: Hurricane Central

Phil Klotzbach, the lead author of the forecast, said an unusually cool tropical Atlantic and increasing chances of an El Nino forming during the fall or winter influenced the updated forecast.

The CSU forecast is intended to provide a best estimate of activity to be experienced during the upcoming season – not an exact measure.

Hurricane Chris sits nearly stationary off the Carolinas on July 10, 2018. 

Michael Bell, associate professor in the Department of Atmospheric Science at CSU and co-author of the report, cautioned coastal residents to take proper precautions.

“It takes only one landfall event near you to make this an active season,” Bell said.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will issue its updated seasonal forecast Aug. 9.

ELATED: How El Nino boosts winter storms in Florida.

Today’s prediction comes on the heels of a report from the National Hurricane Center that showed July was an unusually active month for tropical cyclones with hurricanes Beryl and Chris.

Based on 30-year climatology, one named storm typically forms in the basin in July.

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Above normal tropical cyclone activity occurred in July, but the 2018 season overall is forecast to be below average.