FORT COLLINS, CO (WVUE) - The famed hurricane forecasting team from Colorado State University predicts the 2015 Atlantic basin hurricane season will be "one of the least active seasons since the middle of the 20th century."
Led by Dr. William Gray, the scientists believe a moderately strong El Niño will develop this summer and fall. The prediction also includes a below-average probability of a major hurricane hitting the U.S. coastline and in the Caribbean.
The 2015 prediction includes seven named storms, three hurricanes and just one becoming a major hurricane, meaning a Category 3 storm or higher.
According to the Colorado State team, there is a 15 percent chance that the entire Gulf Coast from Brownsville, Texas, to the Florida Panhandle will see at least one major hurricane make landfall this season. The average for the last century was 30 percent.
Dr. William Gray also used the release of Thursday's prediction to announce his retirement from the forecasts. He writes, "Although I still come to my office every working day and remain quite active, I am now devoting more of my research efforts to the climate change and global warming issue. For this reason I will be discontinuing my formal association with these seasonal hurricane forecasts at the end of this year. But I will remain as a special personal advisor to Phil in all of his future CSU hurricane forecasts as long as I am able."
The Colorado State team urges people who live in hurricane-prone areas that it only takes one hurricane to make landfall to make this an active season for any one individual.