The 2020 Hurricane season has been one for the record books. Hurricane Zeta made landfall earlier this week in Terrebonne Parish as a Cat 2 storm with 110 mph winds. This makes it the strongest US landfalling hurricane this late in the season. This is another storm to add to the long list of landfalling storms this year. Let’s put into perspective though what we have seen and what is to come for the rest of this season.
First, let’s break down the amount of hurricanes we typically see in a season. Over time, this number has increased going from around 4 to 7 hurricanes in total. This year we have seen 11 hurricanes which puts us well above normal.
As for the state of Louisiana a slightly less increasing trend can be found in the amount of landfalling storms. This year has set the record with 5 storms making landfall; 3 of which were hurricanes. This season will very likely rival 2005 in many ways but there are some differences between the two years.
This year we have seen many storms forming quickly. You can see over time this fits the overall trend of “Short-Term Storms” which last for right around 2 days.
Taking a look at many of the storms this year, they all formed in the Gulf or Western Caribbean and all within a week or so of landfall. In fact, the only system we tracked for a long duration of time was Laura which formed out in the Eastern Caribbean back in August.
Another trend we have seen is the fact that many storms have gone under what is known as rapid intensification. Storms like Laura, Hanna, Zeta, and Sally are all great examples of storms that were strengthening as the made landfall.
Looking forward, the tropics look to remain active. The NHC is tracking the potential of tropical development next week. We will keep you up to date on the latest forecast with that so keep tuned!