With only a month before the Atlantic hurricane season begins on June 1, NOAA and the National Hurricane Center are predicting that 2020 will be well above average in tropical storm and hurricane activity. Due to the unusually warm waters of the Atlantic Basin and the lack of an El Nino in the South Pacific, the meteorologists are looking at as many as 16 named storms and eight hurricanes. Four of the hurricanes are forecast to be Category 3 or above. In 2019, the Atlantic had 18 named storms and six hurricanes with three of them ranked Category 3 or above. The 30-year average for the Atlantic is 12 named storms, six hurricanes and three Category 3 storms or above.
The trouble with a forecast like this is no one knows where these named storms will hit so we all have to keep our eyes and ears open. Another bad storm in the Caribbean on top of the shut down from the Covid-19 crisis could spell serious trouble for the charter companies and for many cruisers. Another storm in the Abacos, Bahamas, could set the country back decades.
In the U.S., boat owners from Florida to New England are still under the Covid-19 cloud, although gradually states are opening their waters again. We missed the full force of Dorian last year. Will we miss getting hit again in 2020? The meteorologists are offering the probability that at least one Category 3 or above hurricane will make landfall on the continent. So, as we get ourselves and our boats ready to get back on the water after the health crisis, we still have mother nature to plan for.
Stay safe and healthy.