United States Hurricane Season
The Hurricane Season starts June 1 for the Atlantic Ocean, however there are times that it may get an early start like here in 2012 were we have our first storm of the season two weeks early. So when does the Atlantic Season run? June 1- November 30 is the best time period for storms to occur. You can further break these numbers down into regions of the ocean and Gulf of Mexico. For example in the early time period it is common to find storms that form near the coast of Cuba and move northward into the Gulf of Mexico. Periodically in the early months you will see storms form along the East Coast of the US.
As the season progress towards July and August we start to monitor further into the Atlantic Ocean as the storms start to get stronger coming across the Atlantic Ocean. Also during this time we start watching waves that leave the coast of Africa as they can make their way all across the ocean to the United States.
Hurricane Katrina happened to be one of our storms that formed off the coast of Africa and made its way over to the Gulf Coast of the United States. Another storm of interest was Hurricane Wilma which formed near Cuba and moved due north into Florida as one of the lowest pressure storms in the Atlantic basin. So as you can see we always need to be paying attention to storms from Africa and the ones that form right in our backyard.
A few features in the atmosphere that help meteorologist get an idea of where the storms are going to travel are things like the Bermuda Azores High pressure system that sits in the Atlantic Ocean. The second thing we need to watch are the upper level winds. If they get to strong it will shear the storm and cause the storm to weaken. A third thing we watch are any frontal boundaries that are coming of the United States as this can cause the tropical system to re-curve back into the ocean and away from land.