Myles’ Blog: Last day of Hurricane Season, 2012

Posted at 10:00 AM, Nov 30, 2012
and last updated 2012-11-30 10:55:10-05

November 30 marks the end of the 2012 Atlantic Hurricane season. This season produced 19 tropical depressions, 19 tropical storms, 10 hurricanes and one major hurricane.  The first storm of the season formed on May 19th and later became Tropical Storm Alberto. The last storm dissipated on October 31st as the leftovers of Hurricane Sandy. Here is a look at the entire 2012 season from “the top, down”. This animation shows all of the GOES East satellite imagery from June 1 to November 28th.

An interesting aspect of the season was its early start, with two tropical storms (Alberto and Beryl) developing before the season officially began. Also, this is the seventh consecutive year that no major hurricanes have hit the United States. The only major hurricane this season was Hurricane Michael, a Category 3 storm that stayed over the open Atlantic.

How did 2012 compare to the averages? The number of named storms is well above the average of 12. The number of hurricanes is also above the average of six, but the number of major hurricanes is below the average of three. Based on the combined number, intensity, and duration of all tropical storms and hurricanes, NOAA classifies the season as “above-normal.”

How did the long range forecasts perform? Let’s start with the popular Colorado State University forecast from June 1st; 13 named storms, 5 hurricanes, and 2 major hurricanes. The Florida State University forecast from May 30th: 13 named storms, and 7 hurricanes. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) from August 9th; 12-17 named storms, 5-8 hurricanes, and 2-3 major hurricanes.

Here is a complete list of the 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season… (Name, Dates, Category, Max Winds, Minimum Pressure)

Alberto, May 19 – May 22, Tropical storm, 60mph, 995mb

Beryl, May 26 – May 30, Tropical storm, 70mph, 992mb

Chris, June 19 – June 22, Category 1, 75mph, 987mb

Debby, June 23 – June 27, Tropical storm, 60mph, 990mb

Ernesto, August 1 – August 10, Category 1, 85mph, 980mb

Florence, August 3 – August 6, Tropical storm, 60mph, 1002mb

Helene, August 9 – August 19, Tropical storm, 45mph, 1004mb

Gordon, August 15 – August 20, Category 2, 110mph, 965mb

Isaac, August 21 – September 1, Category 1, 80mph, 968mb

Joyce, August 22 – August 24, Tropical storm, 40mph, 1006mb

Kirk, August 28 – September 2, Category 2, 105mph, 970mb

Leslie, August 30 – September 11, Category 1, 75mph, 968mb

Michael, September 3 – September 11, Category 3, 115mph, 964mb

Nadine, September 11 – October 4, Category 1, 90mph, 978mb

Oscar, October 3 – October 5, Tropical storm, 50mph, 997mb

Patty, October 11 – October 13, Tropical storm, 45mph, 1005mb

Rafael, October 12 – October 17, Category 1, 90mph, 969mb

Sandy, October 22 – October 29, Category 2, 110mph, 940mb

Tony, October 22 – October 25, Tropical storm, 50mph, 1000mb

“This year proved that it’s wrong to think that only major hurricanes can ruin lives and impact local economies,” said Laura Furgione, acting director of NOAA’s National Weather Service. “We are hopeful that after the 2012 hurricane season, more families and businesses all along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts

-Meteorologist Myles Henderson