Forecasters at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service, are predicting above-average hurricane activity this year — which would make it the seventh consecutive above-average hurricane season. NOAA’s outlook for the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, which extends from June 1 to November 30, predicts a 65% chance of an above-normal season, a 25% chance of a near-normal season, and a 10% chance of a below-normal season.
For the 2022 hurricane season, NOAA is forecasting a likely range of 14 to 21 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 6 to 10 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 3 to 6 major hurricanes (category 3, 4 or 5; with winds of 111 mph or higher). NOAA provides these ranges with 70% confidence.
“Early preparation and understanding your risk is key to being hurricane resilient and climate-ready,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo. “Throughout the hurricane season, NOAA experts will work around the clock to provide early and accurate forecasts and warnings that communities in the path of storms can depend on to stay informed.”
The increased activity anticipated this hurricane season is attributed to several climate factors, including the ongoing La Niña that is likely to persist throughout the hurricane season, warmer-than-average sea surface temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, and weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds, and an enhanced west African monsoon. An enhanced west African monsoon supports stronger African Easterly Waves, which seed many of the strongest and longest-lived hurricanes during most seasons. The way in which climate change impacts the strength and frequency of tropical cyclones is a continuous area of study for NOAA scientists.
The National Weather Service notes hurricanes can cause coastline damage and destruction for several hundred miles inland. Hurricanes often produce extreme winds, devastating high tides, flooding from torrential rains, and even tornadoes.
Residents can take the following actions to prepare for severe weather:
- Stay tuned to local radio and TV stations for official weather information, alerts and warnings.
- Follow instructions and advice given by emergency officials.
- Know your evacuation route and have an emergency shelter plan.
- Remain indoors during a hurricane and away from windows and glass doors.
- If you live in a mobile home, plan an alternate shelter. Mobile homes are unsafe in high winds.
- Have a family communication plan and an easy-to-find meeting place in case you are separated when a storm or disaster strikes.
- Consider specific needs of household members, such as medical needs, dietary needs, disabilities, languages spoken, pets or service animals, as well as babies and young children.
- Build an emergency kit and store supplies in easy-to-carry containers. Recommended items for a basic kit include water, non-perishable food, battery-powered or hand-crank radio, flashlight, first aid kit, whistle to signal for help, local maps, cell phone with chargers, and backup battery, prescription medications, cash, important family documents, blankets and change of clothing. Prepare supplies for home, work, and vehicles.
- Fill a bathtub or large container with water for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. This is important for those whose water runs on an electrical system.
Local Emergency Sites:
Calvert County Division of Emergency Management at 410-535-1600, ext. 2638