What to expect this hurricane season in New Orleans
New Orleanians' most dreaded time of year — hurricane season — starts June 1.
What's happening: NOAA predicts a near-normal Atlantic season with 12-17 named storms in total with winds of 39 mph or higher.
- Five to nine of those storms could become hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or higher.
- Of those hurricanes, one to four could become "major" hurricanes of Category 3 or higher with winds of 111 mph or more.
- NOAA has a 70% confidence in these ranges.
Why it matters: Southeast Louisiana residents know better than most that it only takes one bad storm, landing at one bad time in one bad location, to alter a region forever. Now is the time to prepare before the tropics heat up.
Good news: Things are mostly quiet now with the exception of a disturbance in the Gulf that's expected to stay clear of our area.
Threat level: Systems can form any time, but historically, the most active period for strong storms in the Gulf is August and September.
- The first storm of 2023 already formed — in January, no less — off the east coast, but forecasters didn't give it the first name of the season, which will be Arlene.
- See the full list of names.
Flashback: The 2022 season produced 14 named storms, with none making landfall in Louisiana. The story was quite different in 2021, which produced 21 named storms, including the devastating Hurricane Ida.
Read more: What's in our hurricane emergency kits.
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