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Colorado State forecasters call for average Atlantic hurricane season

Forecastersfrom Colorado State University anticipateaverage storm activity during the upcoming Atlantic basin hurricane season. Theupcoming season is likely to feature 12 named storms, five hurricanes and two majorhurricanes at Category 3 strength or higher. The Atlantic hurricane season runsfrom June 1 through Nov. 30 each year.

Theprobability of U.S. major hurricane landfall is estimated to be about 90% ofthe long-period average.

"Thecurrent weakening El Niño is likely to transition to either neutral or La Niñaconditions by the peak of the Atlantic hurricane season. While the tropicalAtlantic is relatively warm, the far North Atlantic is quite cold, potentiallyindicative of a negative phase of the Atlantic Multi-Decadal Oscillation. Weanticipate a near-average probability for major hurricanes making landfallalong the United States coastline and in the Caribbean," the CSU forecastsaid.

Forecastersfrom are callingfor a slightly more active-than-normal hurricane season in the Atlantic basinthis year, projecting the formation of 14 tropical storms and eight hurricanes,according to their outlook released April 6.

However,it is the potential movement of a "cold blob" of water in the NorthAtlantic Ocean that could really impact storm activity during the upcominghurricane season, according to forecasts from The "coldblob" is characterized as a large, anomalous area of colder-than-normalsea-surface temperatures, located east of Newfoundland and south of Greenland.

Forecasterswith Tropical Storm Risk are projecting a slightly less active hurricane seasonthis year in the Atlantic. They are calling for two intense hurricanes, sixhurricanes and 12 tropical storms. The long-term norms are three, six and 11,respectively.

Tropicalcyclone activity in the Atlantic basin is projected to be about 20% below thelong-term norm and about 15% below the recent 2006-2015 10-year norm, TropicalStorm Risk said.