Hurricane Gonzalo to be Second “Major” Hurricane of 2014

Hurricane Ike approaching the Texas coast. September 12, 2008. Credit: NOAA Environmental Visualization Laboratory.

What has been a relatively relaxed hurricane season is about to be interrupted with the soon-to-arrive Hurricane Gonzalo, the seventh hurricane this year. Gonzalo is estimated to hit Bermuda late Friday, Oct. 17, and then sweep north through the middle of the Atlantic, missing the United States.

Most recently classified as a Category 3 hurricane, Gonzalo boasts gusts of wind being recorded of up to 115 mph. Hurricane Gonzalo will be the first major hurricane this year and, if it reaches Category 4 status, will be the strongest hurricane since Ophelia in 2011.

On the other side of the continent, Hawaii is facing its second possible hurricane of the year. If Tropical Storm Ana develops into a hurricane as predicted, it will be the first recorded hurricane to hit Hawaii since Iniki in 1992. Although not nearly as strong as Iniki, which was a Category 4 Hurricane, authorities are advising residents to expect blackouts and stock up on food and water to last them up to seven days.

Since the tropical cyclone season began on June 1, only two of them have been classified as “major hurricanes.” With the summer storms so close to an end, it is looking as though the 2014 Hurricane Season will be below-normal, but the approaching storms are clearly heating things up.

The season officially ends on Nov. 1. If you’re a fan of tracking storms, you can use our hurricane charts to track and record the progress.

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