The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting five to eight tropical cyclones during this year’s central Pacific hurricane season, which starts June 1 and ends Nov. 30.
Chris Brenchley, director of the NOAA Central Pacific Hurricane Center on Oahu said in a news conference today, that is “above the normal of four to five” tropical cyclones during hurricane season.
One factor for the higher-than-normal tropical cyclone prediction is a weak El Nino — a phenomenon which causes higher ocean surface ocean temperatures — which is predicted to continue for the foreseeable future.
There were six tropical cyclones last year in the central Pacific last year, all of which became hurricanes at some point.
Hurricane Lane, in particular, was problematic for the Big Island, causing record rainfall and flooding for East Hawaii and, according to Gov. David Ige, more than $7 million damage at a time when East Hawaii was also dealing with the effects of the lower East Rift Zone eruption of Kilauea volcano.
See Thursday’s Tribune-Herald for a full story.