2013 Atlantic Hurricane Season Recap

The 2013 Atlantic Hurricane Season defied predictions
and became one of the quietest Hurricane Seasons on record.

2013 Atlantic Basin Storms

Select Storm To View Track

Name

Formed

Max.

Dis.

Name

Formed

Max.

Dis.

Name

Formed

Max.

Dis.

Andrea

06/05

06/07

Humberto

09/09

09/18

Olga

N/A

N/A

Barry

03/19

03/20

Ingrid

09/13

09/17

Pablo

N/A

N/A

Chantal

07/07

07/10

Jerry

09/30

10/03

Rebekah

N/A

N/A

Dorian 1

07/24

08/03

Karen

10/03

10/06

Sebastien

N/A

N/A

Erin

08/14

08/18

Lorenzo

10/21

10/24

Tanya

N/A/p>

N/A

Fernand

08/25

08/26

Melissa

10/17

11/21

Van

N/A

N/A

Gabrielle 2

09/04

09/13

Nestor

N/A

N/A

Wendy

N/A

N/A

See The Legend For The Above Table

  • TS Dorian degenerated into a Tropical Wave on 07/27. Remnants of Dorian reorganized into a Tropical Depression on 08/03 off the coast of Florida then became extra-tropical later the same day.
  • TS Gabriella degenerated into a Tropical Wave on 09/05. Remnants of Gabriella reorganized into a Tropical Depression Storm on 9/10 South of Bermuda.

Icon

Designation

Wind/MPH

Wind/KTS

Pressure
Range*

Storm
Surge**

Description

Tropical Depression

Tropical Depression

< 38

< 33

NA

Minimal

Closed surface wind circulation about a well-defined center with winds less than 38 mph (33 kt).

Tropical Storm

Tropical Storm

39 - 73

34 - 63

> 980

< 4

Heavy rain can cause life threatening flooding.

Tropical Storm

Sub-Tropical Storm

39 - 73

34 - 63

> 980

< 4

low-pressure system that has characteristics of both tropical and extratropical cyclones.

Catagory 1

Category 1

74 - 95

64 - 82

994 - 980

4 - 5

Dangerous winds will produce some damage.

Catagory 2

Category 2

96 - 110

83 - 95

979 - 965

6 - 8

Very dangerous winds will cause serious damage

Catagory 3

Category 3

111 - 130

96 - 113

964 - 945

9 - 12

Major Hurricane...Extensive damage will occur

Catagory 4

Category 4

131 - 155

114-135

944 - 920

13 - 18

Devastating Hurricane...Extremely dangerous winds and storm surge will cause devastating damage

Catagory 5

Category 5

>155

>135

< 920

> 18

Catastrophic Hurricane...Catastrophic damage is expected from extremely devastating winds and large storm surge

Remnant Low

Post Tropical

< 39+

< 34+

NA

NA

A vigorous post-tropical cyclone that no longer possesses the convective organization required of a tropical cyclone

Remnant Low

Remnant Low

< 38

< 33

NA

NA

A post-tropical cyclone that no longer possesses the convective organization required of a tropical cyclone

Dissipated

Dissipated

NA

NA

NA

NA

No longer of interest, gone, finished.

*This is the normally expected Minimum Central Pressure for each category. Actual MCP can very greatly.

**This is the normally expected Storm Surge for each category. Like MCP, actual storm surge can very greatly.

2013 Hurricane Season Timeline


Tropical Storm Andrea

Tropical Storm Andrea made landfall on the northwest coast of the Florida Peninsula. It became a gale-force extratropical low over the southeastern United States.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Andrea


Tropical Storm Barry

Tropical Storm Barry produced heavy rainfall and flooding across portions of Central America, the Yucatan Peninsula, and eastern Mexico; the flooding resulted in five direct deaths.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Barry


Tropical Storm Chantal was a rare early July Cape Verde storm. Chantal formed over the tropical Atlantic than rapidly passed through the central Lesser Antilles. It then dissipated over the central Caribbean Sea south of Hispaniola.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Chantal


Tropical Storm Dorian

Tropical Storm Dorian Formed over the far eastern Atlantic and then degenerated into a trough of low pressure east of the northern Leeward Islands. Several days later the system was briefly a tropical depression again near the northwestern Bahamas

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Dorian


Tropical Storm Erin

Tropical Storm Erin was a weak tropical storm that moved south of the Cape Verde Islands and dissipated over the central Atlantic

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Erin


Tropical Storm Fernand

Tropical Storm Fernand was a short-lived tropical storm that formed in the southern Bay of Campeche and made landfall just to the north-northwest of Veracruz, Mexico. Heavy rainfall due to Fernand caused flash flooding and landslides that took the lives of 14 people.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Alberto Fernand


Tropical Storm Gabrielle

Tropical Storm Gabrielle affected Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic as a tropical depression and passed near Bermuda as a tropical storm

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Gabrielle


Hurricane Humberto

Hurricane Humberto reached Category 1 Hurricane strength in the eastern Atlantic after briefly affecting the Cape Verde Islands. Humberto tied the record for the latest-forming first hurricane of any season since 1941.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Hurricane Humberto


Hurricane Ingrid

Hurricane Ingrid was a strong Category 1 hurricane which made landfall near La Pesca, Tamaulipas, Mexico as a tropical storm. The combined effects of Ingrid and Eastern Pacific Hurricane Manuel claimed a total of 157 lives and 33 injured in Mexico during late-September 2013, stranding at least 40,000 others in the resort city of Acapulco amid reports. Twenty-three fatalities were attributed to the storm and damage was estimated in excess of $1.5 billion.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Hurricane Ingrid


Tropical Storm Jerry

Tropical Storm Jerry was a small tropical storm that spent its short lifetime over the central Atlantic Ocean.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Jerry


Tropical Storm Karen

Tropical Storm Karen, was a tropical storm that formed near the Yucatan peninsula and moved northwestward into the north-central Gulf of Mexico, where it dissipated in a high-shear environment. It was one of only a small number of named storms that dissipated in the Gulf of Mexico without making landfall.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Karen


Tropical Storm Lorenzo

Tropical Storm Lorenzo was a short-lived tropical storm that remained over the open waters of the central Atlantic.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Lorenzo


Tropical Storm Melissa

Tropical Storm Melissa was a subtropical storm that transitioned to a tropical cyclone over the central Atlantic Ocean. The storm brought large swells to Bermuda and northern portions of the Caribbean Islands, and produced strong winds over the western Azores Islands.

Tropical Cyclone Report For Tropical Storm Melissa


Pre-Season Forecasts Were All Wrong

Most of the pre-season forecasts called for at least 7 hurricanes, 3 major hurricanes, and an ACE index at least 30% higher than average. The actual numbers worked out to 2 hurricanes, 0 major hurricanes, and an ACE index of just 33% of average. The forecasts were understandable as the most watched conditions leading up the the Hurricane Season were all pointing toward an active season.

  • The Eastern Pacific was in an El Niño nutral phase. This tends to signal wind shear will be low over the tropical Atlantic. Low shear tends to favor hurricane formation.
  • Ocean temperaturesin the Tropical Atlantic, both on the surface and at depth, were well above average.
  • Sea level pressures across the Atlantic Basin were lower than average.
  • Wind shear Over the Atlantic was near average.
  • The African Monsoon was active.

What the forecasters missed, and could not have forseen with the current state of the technology, was the development of an unusually strong trough of low pressure over the Central Atlantic brought large amounts of dry, sinking air to the tropical Atlantic. Large amounts of dry air also propogated out of the Sahara. Also, Northeast Brazil had suffered the most expensive drought in Brazil's history ($8 billion) earlier in the year and this caused unusually strong dry air intrusion into the reagon. The combined intrusion of dry air from these multiple sources was enough to overcome the otherwise favorable conditions to giving us one of the quietest Atlantic hurricane seasons on record.

According to Phil Klotzbach of the Colorado State seasonal forecast team, the relative humidity at the 700 mb level (roughly 10,000 feet) in the Main Development Region in August was the lowest observed in the past 35 years, and September was nearly a bad. The strength of the sinking motion of the air in this region during August and September was the second greatest of the past 35 years. Thunderstorm updraft are hard to sustain when there is so much dry, sinking air at middle levels of the atmosphere.
ibid Dr Jeff Masters

Special Characteristics of the 2013 Hurricane Season

  • Thirteen named storms occurred during 2013. This is the most named storms to occur in a year with two or fewer hurricanes in the historical record. The 1931 hurricane season had thirteen named storms but only three hurricanes.
  • 35.75 named storm days (NSD) occurred during 2013. This is the fewest NSD since 2009 (30 NSD).
  • Two hurricanes formed in 2013. This is the fewest hurricanes since 1982, when two hurricanes also formed.
  • No major hurricanes formed in 2013. The last year with no major hurricane formations was 1994.
  • ACE in 2013 was only 30 units. This is the lowest ACE for an Atlantic hurricane season since 1983 (17 ACE units.)
  • No major hurricanes made U.S. landfall in 2013. The last major hurricane to make U.S. landfall was Wilma (2005), so the U.S. has now gone eight years without a major hurricane landfall. Since 1878 when relatively reliable landfall data became available, the U.S. has never had an eight-year period without a major hurricane landfall.
  • The maximum intensity reached by any hurricane this year was 85 mph (Humberto and Ingrid). This is the weakest maximum intensity achieved by the most intense hurricane of a season since 1968 (Gladys, 85 mph.)
  • Humberto reached hurricane strength early on September 11. It became the second latest forming first hurricane of the year, developing into a hurricane just hours before the previous record latest forming first hurricane of the year (Gustav, 2002.)
  • Two tropical cyclones (TCs) formed in the Main Development Region (south of 23.5°N, east of 75°W) prior to 1 August. The last year with two TCs forming in this region prior to 1 August was all-time busiest hurricane season on record, 2005. The median ACE of the 10 years with two TCs in the MDR prior to 1 August was 174 ACE units. The 2013 season clearly defied many of the typical pre-season climate signals.

The Western Pacific Had A Very Active Season

Western Pacific Season Summary
First system formed January 1, 2013
Strongest Storm Haiyan – 895 mbar, 230 km/h (145 mph) (10-minute sustained)
Depressions 52
Named Storms 31
Typhoons 13
Super typhoons 5
Fatalities 8616 total
Total damage $25.8 billion (2013 USD)

West Pacific Photo Of The Year

Super Typhoon Haiyan Approaches The Philippines

At least 7900 people are dead or missing from Haiyan, making the typhoon the deadliest Natural Disaster in Philippine history.