The forecast calls for a total of 16 named storms, 9 of which are expected to become hurricanes, including 5 major hurricanes (Category 3 or higher on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale).
These forecast numbers are above the long-term average from 1950-2012 (12 named storms, 7 hurricanes, 3 major hurricanes) and slightly above the averages for the current active era from 1995-2012 (15 named storms, 8 hurricanes, 4 major hurricanes).
Three straight Atlantic hurricane seasons have had 19 storms. Only seven Atlantic seasons have had more hurricanes than last season's 10 hurricanes. Among the four U.S. landfalls were the most intense tropical cyclone to make a U.S. landfall prior to June 1 (Tropical Storm Beryl), a soaking Tropical Storm Debby, a painfully slow Hurricane Isaac, and one of the most destructive storms in U.S. history, Superstorm Sandy. (Sandy became a "post-tropical" system shortly before landfall.)
UPDATE: Colorado State University (CSU) released it's forecast for the 2013 hurricane season on April 10, 2012. Similar to The Weather Channel forecast, CSU expects an above-average hurricane season. The team is predicting a total of 18 named storms, 9 hurricanes and 4 major hurricanes (Category 3 or higher).
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