Historic hurricane season
Hurricane Maria may have weakened Wednesday evening, but early Wednesday morning, Maria was a category 4 barreling down on Puerto Rico. This is another major hurricane that has intensified over the warm Atlantic and Caribbean waters this season. Harvey, Irma, Jose and Maria have all been a category 4 or higher, making this season the first since 2005 to have four major hurricanes in one season.
Because of the lack of an El Nino in the Pacific, and ocean waters around one degree warmer than normal, tropical forecasters at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicted 2017 would be an active hurricane season. So far, the season is shaping up in a way that could deem it the most active season since 2010.
In 2010, there were nineteen total named storms, twelve of which were hurricanes. In May, NOAA predicted that there would be 11-17 named storms in the 2017 hurricane season, but in August, they changed their prediction to 14-19 named storms. There have been twelve named storms so far, including the 4 major hurricanes, and the season is not over yet.
Source: NOAA, NHC