Breakdown: Why September is the peak of hurricane season

Published: Sep. 27, 2021 at 1:00 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) -Hurricane season in the Atlantic runs from June 1 through November 30th. The peak of the season is in mid September and there are two main reasons why we hit that height for tropical activity.

Shear can tear apart a hurricane. Shear is the change of direction and speed with height of the wind. In Speptember shear is at its lowest during the month of September. It is lower due to the temperature difference in September between the equator is smaller leading to a lower amount of shear.

It’s those warm ocean waters that fuels huricanes. The water temperatures needs to be at leat 80 degrees. The 12 hours of daylight in September helps to keep the waters warm. Once that amount of daylight decreases so will the water temperatures. This explains why we start to see development decreasing in late October and November once we start to get less than 12 hors of daylight, the water will gradually cool off. That gradual cooling of the waters keeps our season going through November.

Climate change is also having an impact on recent hurricane seasons. The warming has caused larger storms that last longer and are stronger.

Fortunately, the number of hurricanes decreases by late October and November. Wind shear increases in the Atlantic basin and the cooler temperatures of fall will bring cooler water temperatures.

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