In the 2020 Hurricane Season there were 30 named storms. Thirteen became hurricanes, including six major hurricanes with 12 named storms making landfall in the United States – the most active season on record. The previous record for named storms in an Atlantic hurricane season was 2005, which had 28 named storms. 2020 was the fifth year in a row with an above normal number of storms, though 18 of the previous 26 years have also been above the normal number. Of this year’s storms, 9 were classified as “rapidly intensifying,” tying a record set in 1995 and matched in 2010. These types of storms are happening more often, leaving people with less time to prepare. The 2020 season resulted in approximately 430 lives lost and cost an estimated $40 billion in damage. The devastation left in the wake of multiple storms will take months, even years to restore and rebuild, and communities with the least resources are the ones facing the greatest challenges.
Americares responded to 8 out of the 30 named hurricanes of the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season (Hanna, Isaias, Laura, Sally, Delta, Zeta, Eta, and Iota) We track the storms and respond where help was needed – even as the COVID Pandemic ravages communities around the world.
And in 2021 a different extreme weather threat proved deadly in Texas. The Texas Cold Weather Crisis has starkly demonstrated the impact that extreme weather can have on communities and basic infrastructure that have not adequately prepared for potential weather disasters.
Currently the World Health Organization tells us that heat waves are considered among the most dangerous of natural hazards but rarely receive adequate attention because their death tolls and destruction are not always obvious. From 1998 to 2017, more than 166,000 people around the world died because of heat waves. The early summer deadly heat wave hammering the Pacific Northwest has killed dozens of people with temperatures rising past 120 degrees in some areas, as the extreme heat buckled roads and melted powerlines.
And the 2021 Hurricane Season is now complete. Hurricane Ida left a path of death and devastation, followed by Storms Julian, Kate, Larry, Mindy, Nicholas, Peter, Rose, Sam and all the way to Wanda. The 2021 season became only the third in history to use all of the names on the rotating seasonal list (the previous years were 2020 and 2005). The season ended with 21 named storms, 7 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes (Category 3 or higher).
Next season is months away. But don’t wait. Get Ready Now.
And what about typhoons and cyclones? Physically, they are hurricanes by a different name. They are called hurricanes in the Atlantic and in the Eastern Pacific, typhoons in the West Pacific and cyclones around Australia and India.