The Labor Day weekend is looming and with it what much of the country considers the end of the summer. Here in Florida, we should known by now that one think won’t be over next week, the 2013 Atlantic hurricane season.
Most of the experts predicted this years hurricane season would be active. So far, however, there have only been a few named storms and none have come anywhere close to menace the Gulf Coast. Even as late as two weeks ago, however, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration was still listing the likelihood of an above-average 2013 Atlantic hurricane season at 70 percent. As most people in this part of the world knows — or should known or should be considering living somewhere else for safety sake — the bulk of the hurricane activity comes in September, even though in the Atlantic Basin, which includes the Gulf, the season begins June 1.
We don’t know why things have been so quite in the first three months of the season. The waters of the Gulf, where early storms usually spawn, have been warm enough to generate storms but mostly haven’t. In addition, the tropical waves that later in the season sweep off the western coast of Africa roar relentlessly in our direction haven’t gotten up much of a head of steam yet.
Even if we get through September without a major storm, the opera won’t be over. In 2005, Hurricane Wilma, the most intense hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic Basin, with winds as high as 185 mph, didn’t form until Oct. 15.