NOAA predicts below-normal hurricane season

NOAA predicts below-normal hurricane season

SURFSIDE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said they're expecting a less-active hurricane season in the Atlantic this year.

In a news release Thursday, NOAA said their forecasters are predicting fewer storms to form in the Atlantic, despite differing predictions at the beginning of hurricane season.

NOAA expects nine to 13 named storms, four to seven hurricanes, and zero to two major hurricanes.

While it may sound like good news, First Alert Chief Meteorologist Jamie Arnold said it's important to note that the number of storms forming in the Atlantic isn't as important as how many storms will make landfall.

"The only thing that matters is where they go," Arnold said. "It only takes one single storm. You can have 25 storms that form in the Atlantic Ocean, none of them come here. As far as we care, it's a slow season. You can have three storms form out there, but if we get hit by one of those, then it's a bad season, a busy season for us."

Surfside Beach was one of the areas hit hard by Hurricane Matthew in 2016.

Abigail Briggs lives in Surfside Beach and she said the memories of Matthew aren't pleasant.

"That was my first hurricane I ever went through," Briggs said. "It was absolutely terrifying."

While Briggs is excited to hear the prediction of a less-active hurricane season, she's still preparing for the worst.

"We're upgrading our generator. I already pulled out the hurricane kit and made sure everything was current," she said. "You always have to be prepared; anything can happen at any minute."

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