Is Alberto a bad omen?

Posted at 9:32 PM, May 21, 2012
and last updated 2012-05-21 21:35:36-04

A tropical storm nearly two weeks before the start of the Atlantic hurricane season… that must be a sign that it’s going to be a bad season, right? 

Maybe. Maybe not.  The last storm to form earlier than Alberto was Tropical Storm Ana in 2003.  That year we did have a very active season.  In fact, many of us have bad memories of a 2003 hurricane by the name of Isabel.  But there is no correlation between early storms and active seasons.

However, forecasters don’t expect 2012 to be an especially active hurricane season.  Forecasters at Colorado State University are calling for a below-normal season with just ten named storms.  (See their forecast HERE.)  While AccuWeather forecasters expect a near-normal season with 12 named storms.  (See their forecast HERE.)

Ten, 12 or 20… the only number that matters is one.  The one that hits us.  The 1992 hurricane season had one of the slowest starts on record and ended up being a below-normal year.  The first named storm didn’t form until August 16th.  Unfortunately, that storm was named Andrew.  It was one of the costliest natural disasters in U.S. history.

Just remember, when you live along the coast, you treat every hurricane season the same: you prepare for the worst.