Chris Hohmann breaks down the 2020 Hurricane Season forecast

This story is part of our 2020 hurricane special Storm Ready 2020: Preparing in a Pandemic

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Thursday, June 11, 2020
Chris Hohmann breaks down the 2020 Hurricane Season forecast
Chris Hohmann breaks down the 2020 Hurricane Season forecast

North Carolina has been hit by hurricanes for two years in a row and we've already had a tropical storm, Arthur, brush our coast this year.

But what's in store for the rest of the season? There's no way to know if North Carolina will be struck again, but the forecast is for another active season in the Atlantic Basin.

The National Hurricane centers is forecasting a total of 13-19 named storms-that's tropical storm strength or higher.

Of those, 6-10 are expected to become hurricanes and 3-6 of those will be major hurricanes-category three or higher.

Meteorologists look at many conditions when a making a forecast, including ocean temperatures, upper air wind patterns and even dust off the Sahara desert.

And this year looks to be more active because the water in the Atlantic will be warmer than average and there's no El Nino forecast to help tear these storms apart.

There are four dangers from hurricanes: First, extremely heavy rain can cause catastrophic flooding. We saw that two years ago when Hurricane Florence unleashed as much as 35 inches of rain on parts of the state.

Strong winds in a hurricane can be devastating. A Category 3 hurricane packs winds of 111 mph or higher that can destroy some structures, especially unanchored mobile homes or other small buildings.

Then there's the storm surge-or rise in water-as a storm makes landfall. The storm surge in a Category 3 storm can be higher than 9 feet above normal level, which can submerge buildings along the coast.

And finally-tornadoes. Many landfalling hurricanes produce weak but still dangerous twisters.

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