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Will the 2017 Eastern Pacific hurricane season be active? - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

Will the 2017 Eastern Pacific hurricane season be active?

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TUCSON - El Niño or not? That's the key to how much activity develops off the Western Mexico coast this Summer.

NOAA's 2017 Eastern Pacific Hurricane Season outlook predicts a near-normal or above-normal season. There is a 40% chance of an above-normal season, a 40% chance of a near-normal season, and a 20% chance of a below-normal season.

If an above normal hurricane season in the Eastern Pacific materializes, it could boost the Arizona Monsoon.

The outlook calls for a 70% probability for each of the following ranges of activity during the 2017 hurricane season, which runs from May 15th through November 30th:

- 14-20 Named Storms

- 6-11 Hurricanes

- 3-7 Major Hurricanes

These expected ranges are centered above the 1981-2010 seasonal averages of 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes.

Model forecasts show considerable uncertainty as to whether a potential El Niño (ENSO) becomes strong enough to significantly strengthen the hurricane season. If a weak El Niño develops, warmer SSTs and weaker vertical wind shear would likely yield levels of activity toward the upper ends of the predicted ranges. In addition, increased activity in the Eastern Pacific could boost the Arizona Monsoon.

Near normal ocean temps combined with near-average vertical wind shear in the Eastern Pacific hurricane region would likely yield levels of activity near the lower ends of the predicted ranges.

This outlook is general guide to the expected overall activity during the upcoming hurricane season. It is not a seasonal hurricane landfall forecast, and it does not imply levels of activity for any particular location.

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