Updated May 31, 2023 - News

What to expect this hurricane season in New Orleans

hurricane radar over the gulf coast new orleans

Satellite image from NOAA as Hurricane Isaac moved toward the Gulf Coast in 2012. Photo: NOAA via Getty Images

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.

helicopter flies over a flooded area of homes
A military helicopter drops bags of sand on the breach in the Industrial Canal levee next to homes in the Lower Ninth Ward on September 24, 2005, after both Hurricane Rita and Katrina ravaged the region. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

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.

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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