The U.S. experienced a record-breaking hurricane season last year, with 30 named storms, including 13 hurricanes and 6 major hurricanes. As we discuss below, scientists predict 2021 will be yet another busy season.
Experts are urging schools and communities to prepare now, as it only takes one storm to impact your school and community. Being prepared requires you to have a severe weather response plan that outlines what your school community will do to prepare for, respond to, and recover from weather-related incidents.
A Record-Breaking Hurricane Season
Two weeks before the official start of the season, the U.S. named its first storm of 2020: Tropical Storm Arthur. As the season continued, we quickly exceeded the predictions for the year.
We named a record-breaking nine storms during the summer (from May through July). By September, we used the entire alphabetical list of 21 names for the season, so we had to continue naming storms with the Greek alphabet. This has only happened once before.
Other record-breaking facts from 2020:
- 12 storms made landfall in the U.S. The previous record, set in 1916, was 9 landfalls.
- Louisiana, with 5 landfalls, holds the record for most storms making landfall in a single state in one season.
- 10 storms formed in September alone. This created the record for most storms in a single month.
- Hurricanes Eta and Iota both formed in November. This is the first time in history that two major hurricanes formed in the same month.
- 10 of the 13 hurricanes rapidly intensified in category and wind speed. This rapid intensification makes it difficult to accurately forecast the storm and prepare adequately. These storms are especially dangerous if they intensify just before landfall.
Although scientists are not expecting this season to break as many records, as of July 2021, we have had more named storms this hurricane season than we did at this time last year.
The Latest Predictions for 2021
The Department of Atmospheric Science at Colorado State University (CSU) releases a series of predictions before and during each hurricane season.
In June 2021, CSU predicted 17 named storms, with 8 hurricanes and 4 major hurricanes. A month into the season, CSU updated their forecast. Now, they are expecting 20 named storms, 9 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes. CSU predicts an “above-normal” chance of these major hurricanes making landfall across our coast.
It Only Takes One Storm
School visitor and emergency management systems can greatly improve your preparedness, response, and recovery. Raptor Visitor Management keeps track of everyone in your schools and integrates with Raptor Emergency Management. If you need to take shelter or evacuate, you will be able to account for everyone on campus—and keep track of where they are and how they are doing—all on your mobile device, tablet, and desktop. Raptor Emergency Management also enables users to initiate emergencies, for weather or other threats, from their mobile phones, connect with 9-1-1, and keep updated through group messaging.
There are many factors to a successful response. Using an emergency management system can help your school prepare for, respond to, and recover from any incident, including inclement weather. To learn how, contact Raptor today to schedule a personalized demo.