Hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean basin runs from June through November. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting 14 to 23 named storms this season. To become a named storm, it must have wind speeds of 39 mph or higher. Of these, 8 to 14 will turn into hurricanes, and 3 to 7 are predicted to become major hurricanes with sustained winds of at least 111 miles per hour. NOAA does not make a seasonal prediction on the path of hurricanes but will predict a hurricane’s path once the storm develops.
The first named storm of the season in the Pacific is Agatha. That storm hit the Central American coast on Saturday, May 30. Over 100 people have already been killed by that storm.
What will happen if there is a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico? Hurricanes get their energy from the evaporation of warm water. The oil film will likely reduce evaporation, which at one time was thought to be a method of weather modification to inhibit hurricane strength. However, the winds will likely stir the oil, exposing the water below. The temperature of that water is unknown. Because of the counter-clockwise flow of the winds, if the storm center is to the west of the main spill, the winds will move oil towards land. With a storm center to the east, oil will likely be pushed away from land. Either way, it is probably best to hope for no hurricanes in the Gulf this season!