Usually, by the time hay bales become standard décor, corn fields turn into mazes, and every other billboard displays an ad for a haunted house – we can count on the Atlantic hurricane season to begin winding down. But there hasn’t been much that has been “usual” about this year (not to mention the COVID-19 pandemic too)!
An Active, Above Average Hurricane Season
Even before the hurricane season began, experts were predicting an active hurricane season. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service predicted a 60% chance of an above-normal hurricane season. An average hurricane season typically produces around 12 named storms. And an above average season is predicted to produce 13-19 named storms, 6-10 of which become hurricanes, and 3-6 major hurricanes (category 3, 4 or 5 storms).
A Record Breaking Hurricane Season in 2020
The 2020 Atlantic hurricane season has blown past predictions – making it one of the most active hurricane seasons in recent history (since the current high-activity era began in 1995).
On Tuesday, September 22, 2020 – summer officially ended, and the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season broke its biggest record yet. This year (2020) had the highest number of named storms (23) ever recorded in a season through the end of summer. That’s 6 more than the previous record of 17 named storms in 2005. It’s also only the second time in history (2005 was the first time) the National Hurricane Center (NHC) ran out of names and had to resort to using Greek letters to continue to name storms.
More records broken this (2020) hurricane season include:
- The first record of the 2020 hurricane season was broken on June 2, 2020 when Tropical Storm Cristobal developed, making Cristobal the earliest forming “C” named storm of any season. This was 3 days earlier than the previous record on file, held by Tropical Storm Colin (2016).
- And, more named storms, designated by specific alphabet “letters” have formed earlier this year than ever before. By the end of summer, 23 storms had already been named, with 20 of those storms now having the earliest formation date on record for their specific storm “letter”. Arthur, Bertha and Dolly are the exceptions.
- Plus, September is the season’s busiest month. September 2020 saw 10 named storms, a new record for the most named storms formed during a single month. The previous record was 8 storms which occurred in 2002, 2007, and 2010.
The 2020 hurricane season has tied a couple records too. Including:
- A long-standing record – the record for the most named storms to form in a single day. An exceedingly rare occurrence, this has only happened twice since the hurricane center began keeping reliable records in 1851. The first documented occurrence was on August 15, 1893. Three generically named storms, numbered as 4, 5, and 6 all formed on the very same day. Then, it happened again recently, on September 18, 2020. Tropical Storm Wilfred, Subtropical Storm Alpha and Tropical Storm Beta all formed on the same day tying the record for the most.
- When Tropical Storm Beta made landfall on September 22, 2020 as the 9th named storm to make landfall in the contiguous United States in one season, it tied the previous 1916 Atlantic hurricane season record. But there is still plenty of time left; the 2020 hurricane season could likely end up overtaking this record too.
Florida Seawall Inspection and Seawall Repair Services
Tampa area residents and the communities along Florida’s west coast have been truly fortunate this hurricane season. Most storms have been heading up the eastern seaboard, and those entering the Gulf of Mexico have been making landfall farther west.
But just because your seawall hasn’t suffered a direct hit from a hurricane or heavy tropical storms this year, doesn’t mean you can forgo the annual seawall inspection and/or repair process. With such an active hurricane season, there may still be damage; it just may be less obvious to the naked eye. Our Florida Certified Contractors at Gibson Marine Construction offer seawall construction, inspection, and repair services. Let our trusted team of marine construction experts help keep your seawall safe and functioning properly. Call or complete the contact form to learn more.