85% of All Hurricane Activity Occurs After This Date

Aug 15, 2019

More than 85 percent of all hurricane activity in the Atlantic Basin occurs after the middle of August.

Some consider Aug. 15 as the “real” start to hurricane season. To others, like former FEMA administrator Craig Fugate, it’s synonymous with the start of football season.

Thunderstorms are likely to become more widespread across the Palmetto State over the next three days, thanks to an approaching front. The storms will provide some relief from the heat, but a few of them may become strong enough to produce damaging wind gusts and flash flooding.

The chances for above normal hurricane activity in the Atlantic Basin this year have increased according to the newly-released seasonal update from NOAA.

The agency also said El Nino — a climate phenomenon that warms the water in the eastern Pacific Ocean and often reduces hurricanes in the Atlantic — has officially ended. This is the primary reason for the higher chance of more tropical activity.

The most active part of the hurricane season are the months of August, September, and October. In this “State of the Season” report, we will assess trends in atmospheric and oceanic conditions around the globe that may lend clues on how the waters could behave over the next few weeks.

The Season So Far

The Atlantic is About to Come Alive

Jul 31, 2019

The most active part of the hurricane season often begins in August. Right on-cue, at least one tropical system is likely to form in the Atlantic by the upcoming weekend.

System Near Florida Only a Rain-Maker

Heat Wave to Break Tuesday, Thanks to a Strong Front

Jul 22, 2019

Update Tuesday 2:00 p.m. ET:

A Severe Thunderstorm Watch has been issued for eastern South Carolina until 10 p.m. A line of strong to severe thunderstorms are developing along and southeast of a cold front moving south towards the Lowcountry. Scattered damaging wind gusts up to 70 mph and a tornado or two are possible.

Update Tuesday 11:30 a.m. ET:

Heat Wave expected to last into the weekend

Jul 18, 2019

The large heat dome that has prompted the issuance of heat advisories and warnings over a large swath of the central and eastern United States is making its presence felt here in South Carolina.

Widespread temperatures in the mid to upper 90s, along with high humidity, will result in heat indices around 105 degrees over the Midlands and Low Country. The greatest combination of heat and humidity is forecast over the Pee Dee and Grand Strand regions, where the National Weather Service has issued heat advisories. Heat indices are forecast to reach 108 degrees in the advisory area.

El Niño Fading as Heart of Hurricane Season Approaches

Jul 17, 2019

The heart of hurricane season is approaching, and the atmosphere is signaling that the Atlantic Basin could soon become more active.

No development is expected over the next week to ten days. However, later this summer and fall, global-scale climate factors are changing. And this could make conditions more favorable for tropical storm or hurricane development.

Forecasters examine many features when forecasting for the tropics. They include: wind shear, water temperatures, atmospheric dust concentrations, moisture in the air, and global atmospheric circulations.

Barry To Drench Parts of the Gulf Coast

Jul 12, 2019

Tropical Storm Barry is intensifying as it moves slowly toward the Louisiana Gulf coast.

Barry was located 100 miles southwest of the mouth of the Mississippi River, according to the advisory issued by the National Hurricane Center at 11 am Friday. The warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico should encourage the system to intensify, but dry air high above the storm and wind shear have prevented rapid strengthening so far. Forecasters expect Barry to be near hurricane intensity as it makes landfall Saturday morning along the Louisiana coast.

Tropical Storm Barry Forms in the Gulf of Mexico

Jul 11, 2019

The National Hurricane Center says the tropical system in the Gulf of Mexico is now Tropical Storm Barry, and it could become a hurricane before hitting Louisiana this weekend.

Likely Tropical Development in the Gulf

Jul 8, 2019

A low that is over South Carolina and Georgia on Monday morning is likely to become a tropical depression later this week as it moves south into the northern Gulf of Mexico.

Jeff Huffman / SCEIN

Update Thursday 2:30 pm ET:  Thunderstorms are blossoming across South Carolina at this hour.  The strongest activity was noted on radar north of Columbia, near Rock Hill and Lancaster, where several Severe Thunderstorm Warnings have been issued.  Another strong cluster of storms have developed in the Pee Dee region just inland from Georgetown and Myrtle Beach.  The storms are expected to continue developing across the Palmetto State this afternoon, capable of producing wind damage, dangerous cloud-to-ground lightning and very heavy rain.  

Jeff Huffman / SCEIN

The Tropical Atlantic Ocean has been quiet, and there are no signs of significant trouble anytime soon.

Water temperatures might be favorable for tropical development in some areas, but other conditions such as wind shear and dry, dusty air are likely to prevent tropical storms or hurricanes from developing during the first two weeks of July. In this “State of the Season” update, we will provide an overview of those conditions and trends we are watching that could influence the long range forecast in the tropics.

 Water Temperatures Vary

Summer Started Stormy, so What's Next?

Jun 28, 2019
July through September Temperature Outlook
NOAA Climate Prediction Center

It was a stormy start to summer in South Carolina.  Severe thunderstorms damaged trees and knocked out power to thousands of residents on multiple occasions during the first offical week of the new season.

As June is winding down, the 7-Day rainfall forecast from the National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center is showing generally dry conditions.

Update 7 pm Monday:  A Severe Thunderstorm Watch was issued for the Upstate region through 1 am.  Strong storms are moving into the region and have the potential to produce damaging wind and hail.