2024 Hurricane Outlook Predictions

June 1, 2024 at 11:48 p.m.

By Chris Cameron

No one has a crystal ball and weather services can only issue projected outlooks based on computer-generated models, but here is what some of the weather services predict for the 2024 Atlantic Hurricane season.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Weather Service forecasters issued their 2024 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook on May 23rd. They predict an 85% chance of an above-normal season, a 10% chance of a near-normal season and a 5% chance of below-normal season. A range of 17 to 25 total named storms with winds of 39mph or higher are predicted. Of those, 8 to 13 are forecast to become hurricanes, including 4 to 7 major hurricanes (category 3, 4 or 5). Forecasters have a 70% confidence in these ranges. The above-normal activity is based on a confluence of factors, including near-record warm ocean temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean, development of La Nina conditions in the Pacific, reduced Atlantic trade winds and less wind shear, all of which tend to favor tropical storm formation. This hurricane season also features the potential for an above-normal West African monsoon, which can produce African easterly waves that seed some of the strongest and longer-lived Atlantic storms. This outlook will be updated in early August, prior to the historical peak of the season. Learn more at noaa.gov.

In April, The Weather Channel (weather.com) issued their 2024 storm season forecast. The 2024 hurricane season could be one of the most active on record because of two main factors. First, El Niño is expected to become La Niña, which usually enhances storms. Secondly, Atlantic Ocean water is record-warm in most areas, which also could enhance storms. Accuweather meteorologists are predicting the 2024 season to be one of the most active on record, with 20 to 25 named storms. See their forecast at accuweather.com/en/hurricane.

Colorado State University’s tropical meteorology project team is forecasting 23 storms, 11 of which will become hurricanes and five of which will reach Category 3 status or stronger. This forecast was issued in April and it will be updated on Tuesday, June 11th at tropical.colostate.educ/forecasting. 

Just a refresher on the Hurricane Wind Scale: The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale rates storms based on the storm’s sustained wind speed. Storms fall into one of five categories which will be updated as the storm intensity changes. Category 1: 74 to 95 mph winds. Category 2: 96 to 110 mph winds. Category 3: 111 to 129mph. Category 4: 130 to 156 mph winds. Category 5: 157 mph winds and higher.

So, who might come knocking on Southwest Florida’s door this season? Here is the list of names for the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season. The names are given out in alphabetical order to each new storm. The first named storm of 2024 will be Alberto, followed by Beryl, Chris, Debby, Ernesto, Francine, Gordon, Helene, Isaac, Joyce, Kirk, Leslie, Milton, Nadine, Oscar, Patty, Rafael, Sara, Tony, Valerie and William. There are no Q, U, X, Y or Z names due to limited names beginning with those letters. If all 21 names are used this year, the supplemental listing is not Greek alphabet letters like in previous years. This year’s names are Adria, Braylen, Caridad, Deshawn, Emery, Foster, Gemma, Heath, Isla, Jacobus, Kenzie, Lucio, Makayla, Nolan, Orlanda, Pax, Ronin, Sophie, Tayshaun, Viviana and Will.