Here’s why hurricane season is off to a slow start. Or is it?

Two words: recency bias. To date, there have been zero named storms when it comes to the 2024 season. So does the lack of storms so far mean that those extremely active forecasts will bust?

Not exactly.

Recent seasons may have us thinking that the season is off to a slow start.

Date when first named storms developed. (WKMGNewstar/)

On average, however, the first named storm of the season doesn’t form until June 20. Typically, more than 80% of any given season’s activity occurs after Aug. 15

Tropical; Climatology (WKMGNewstar/)

It is important to remember that early-season activity, or lack thereof, does not foretell what the remainder of the season will bring. For example, during the 2004 hurricane season, the first storm didn’t form until July 31.

Floridians know all too well how that season turned out.

2004 would go on to be one of the most intense seasons on record producing 15 named storms, four of them significantly impacting the Sunshine State.

As for this season, the eastern Pacific is even warmer than the Atlantic, which can help keep the basin on the quieter side. La Niña is also just starting to appear and is expected to arrive later in the summer. La Niña typically promotes a more active season.

Tuesday, the National Hurricane Center designated the first area of investigation or Invest of the season. This is when the NHC runs specialized models on the system to help the forecast process. Hurricanes Hunters could also investigate the disturbance.

Over the weekend or early next week, another area of interest could develop in the Bay of Campeche or the extreme southwest Gulf of Mexico.

The moral of the story? There is unfortunately a long way to go.

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