(WRDW/WAGT) -- The 2019 Atlantic Hurricane season officially starts Saturday, June 1st. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released their forecast for the 2019 season last week and predicts a near-normal hurricane season.
The two big factors for this year's forecast are El Nino and above average sea surface temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea.
We are currently in an El Nino phase and it is expected to last through the season. El Nino usually leads to more wind shear in the Atlantic Basin, which inhibits tropical cyclone development and less named storms. Above average sea surface temperatures across the Atlantic Basin are expected this season, which will help tropical cyclone development. These two factors combined are expected to lead to a near-normal season.
Even though the official start to the 2019 hurricane season is not until June 1st, we have already had our first named storm of the season, Andrea. The next named storm to form will be Barry.
Another season outlook will be issued in August before the peak of the season.
To read the full press release issued by NOAA, click here.