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Old September 21st 17, 05:49 PM posted to alt.talk.weather,alt.conspiracy
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Default [NYTimes] The 2017 Hurricane Season Really Is More Intense ThanNormal

[NYTimes] The 2017 Hurricane Season Really Is More Intense Than Normal

Full story:
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/19/us/hurricanes-irma-harvey-maria.html

It was only 25 days ago that Hurricane Harvey made landfall.

You could be forgiven for thinking it’s been longer. After all, that was
four hurricanes ago.

We crunched the numbers and talked to an expert, and it’s not your
imagination: The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season has been unusually active.

“This season has been an overachiever by almost every index,” said Bob
Henson, a meteorologist for Weather Underground, a forecasting service.
“We’ve had more than a year’s worth of named storms when you look at the
long-term average, and that’s being just past the midpoint of the season.”

There have been 13 named storms this year. Only four other seasons since
1995 have had that many by Sept. 18. Just two more by the end of the
year would put 2017 in the top 15 since 1851, when reliable records begin.

That almost certainly will happen.

“I would be shocked if we didn’t get at least two more,” Mr. Henson said.
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Of the 13 named storms so far in 2017, seven have been hurricanes, a
number matched or exceeded at this point in the season only four times
since 1995. Four of the seven — Harvey, Irma, Jose and Maria — have
reached Category 3 or higher, the threshold for a major hurricane on the
Saffir-Simpson scale. Only five other seasons since 1995 have had that
many by Sept. 18.

More named storms have developed in the first three and a half months of
the six-month hurricane season than developed in the entirety of the
1997, 1999, 2002, 2006, 2009, 2014 or 2015 seasons, according to
National Hurricane Center and Weather Underground data. “We’re running
at about twice the pace of a typical season,” Mr. Henson said.

A few caveats are in order. August, September and October are almost
always the peak of the season, and it isn’t uncommon for several storms
to develop on each other’s heels, as Harvey, Irma, Jose, Katia, Lee and
Maria did from Aug. 17 to Sept. 16. And the phrase “above average” loses
some of its significance when 10 of the 15 most active hurricane seasons
since antebellum America have occurred in the past two decades.

What stands out is the combination of frequency and intensity. It may
not be unheard-of for six storms to develop in a month, but it is very
unusual for two Category 4 and two Category 5 hurricanes to do so.

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