June 1 marks the official start of the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season. There are predictions of a slightly above-average and slightly below-average season, a forecast of up to 14 named storms, seven hurricanes, and three major hurricanes; and the reality: plan for the worst, hope for the best.
This spring, the hurricane forecasting team from Colorado State University (CSU) predicted a slightly above-average Atlantic hurricane season based on benchmarks from five years with similar conditions and characteristics. On the other side of the pond (literally), the British forecasting firm Tropical Storm Risk, Inc. calls for a slightly below-average Atlantic hurricane season based on statistical modeling of the forecast July – September trade wind speed over the Caribbean and tropical North Atlantic. Later this month, CSU will issue another forecast, which according to experts at Weather Underground, is “the one worth paying attention to.” Read more at Weather Underground.
It is an important reminder to be prepared for Mother Nature’s wrath, regardless of how much activity is predicted or forecasted. As of this writing, Alberto, the first named storm, made its subtropical landfall on Memorial Day in the Florida Panhandle. According to Weather.com, Alberto unleashed heavy rainfall in six Southeast states, mudslides, and flooding.
What can we expect from the 2018 Hurricane Season? Here are a few opinions and facts, followed by AFSI’s annual list of flood risk tips to keep homes, businesses, and loved ones safe.
CSU 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season Forecast: Slightly Above-Average by Dr. Jeff Masters | Category 6
Above: The strongest Atlantic hurricane of 2017, Hurricane Irma, as seen by the MODIS instrument on September 5, 2017. At the time, Irma was at peak strength, a Category 5 storm with 180 mph winds.
List of hurricane names for the 2018 US hurricane season in the Atlantic Basin and Eastern North-Pacific from The Old Farmer’s Almanac.
Harvey, Irma, Maria and Nate will all be retired from hurricane naming circulation. Tony Spitz has the details.
Tips for the 2018 Hurricane Season
- Be aware of flood control systems and structures in your community. Don’t be embarrassed to call City Hall or the appropriate municipal department to ask about the maintenance and operational status of floodgates, flood barriers, levees, dams, dikes, and seawalls.
- Check the drainage around your property. Ensure that water has a path to flow away from structures and into a swale or street drain.
- Keep storm drains clear of trash and landscaping debris. In compromised drainage systems, water has nowhere to go but up, resulting in flooding of streets, lawns, and possibly buildings. Even low-risk buildings that were built responsibly to protect against flooding become high risk when drainage systems are clogged or blocked.
- Be sure that proposed enclosures or other alterations meet with local floodplain regulations. Before enclosing nonliving areas of a building or home, it’s a good idea for a property owner to confer with local building officials to ensure that the proposed enclosure will be safe from flooding. Patios, garages, balconies, and other nonliving areas are not designed to protect against flooding as much as planned living areas.
- If you own or operate a business, an asset management system will help you weather the aftermath of a storm and ensure that you have detailed and accurate information when filing a claim. Read the previous AFSI blog post: Storm Season Readiness: Asset Management.
Are you prepared for the 2018 Hurricane Season? Take a proactive step to protect your home or business. Submit your property for a complimentary flood risk evaluation today.