List of off-season Atlantic hurricanes

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Radar image of a hurricane near the Lesser Antilles. The storm features a well-defined, clear eye surrounded by a mass of intense convection. Rotating feeder bands, curving into the system, are present around the entire hurricane
Radar image of Hurricane Alice in 1955, the first recorded North Atlantic hurricane to span two calendar years

An off-season Atlantic hurricane is a recorded tropical or subtropical cyclone that existed in the Atlantic basin outside of the official Atlantic hurricane season. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration currently defines the season as occurring between June 1 and November 30 each calendar year, which is when 97% of all Atlantic tropical cyclones occur. Peak activity is known to be between August and October. In the off-season, storms are most likely to occur in May, with approximately 60% of such storms occurring during that month. Occasionally, however, storms develop in or persist until December. As of 2014, there have been 69 off-season cyclones in the Atlantic hurricane database, which began in 1851. In addition, there were six storms before 1851, and one hurricane in 1863 that is not part of the official database.

Off-season cyclones are most likely to occur in the central to western Atlantic Ocean, and most do not make landfall. Of the storms that did strike land, most affected areas surrounding the Caribbean Sea. Cumulatively, at least 240 deaths occurred due to the storms, primarily on the islands of Hispaniola and Cuba; a Tropical storm in May 1948 struck the Dominican Republic to become the deadliest off-season storm. However, an unofficial hurricane in 1863 killed 110 people due to a shipwreck off Florida and on land. The strongest hurricane between December to May was Hurricane Able in 1951, which reached winds of 115 mph (185 km/h). In addition, the strongest off-season cyclone to make landfall in the United States was Tropical Storm Beryl in 2012, which made landfall near Jacksonville Beach, Florida with 65 mph (100 km/h) winds.[1] An unnamed subtropical storm in December 2013 is the most recent off-season storm.

Background[edit]

In 1938, the United States Weather Bureau began issuing tropical cyclone warnings as a collaborative observation network for cities along the U.S. coastline, and the season was defined between June 15 and November 15.[2] In 1964, the season was extended to begin on June 1 and end on November 30,[3] which remains the official length of the season. About 97% of all tropical cyclones form within this time span, and activity usually peaks between August and October.[4]

Chronology[edit]

Tropical cyclones have been named in the Atlantic since the 1947 Atlantic hurricane season, and subtropical cyclones have been recognized in HURDAT since 1968. The National Hurricane Center issues names for tropical and subtropical cyclones once their winds reach 39 mph (63 km/h). Before 1950, storms are numbered based on their appearance in the Atlantic hurricane database, although tropical depressions are unnumbered.[5][6][7] Storms before 1851 are unofficial and are not part of the official Atlantic hurricane best track.[8] In addition, a hurricane from May 1863, labeled "Amanda", is included after being rediscovered in 2013.[9]

The wind speeds listed are maximum one-minute average sustained winds, and the pressure is the minimum barometric pressure; tropical cyclones listed with N/A under pressure indicates there is no known estimated pressure. For deaths, "None" indicates that there were no reports of fatalities; death tolls listed as "several" mean there were fatalities reported, but an exact total is unavailable. For both deaths and damage, N/A refers to no known total, although such storms may have impacted land. The damage totals are the United states dollar of the year of the storm.

Name Dates active Category at
peak intensity
Sustained
wind speeds
Pressure Land areas affected Damage
(USD)
Deaths Refs
Unnamed May 23 – 24, 1771 Tropical storm ≥40 mph (65 km/h) Not Specified Cuba N/A None [8]
Unnamed May 25 – 26, 1779 Tropical storm ≥40 mph (65 km/h) Not Specified Cuba N/A None [8]
Unnamed May 28, 1794 Tropical storm ≥40 mph (65 km/h) Not Specified Cuba N/A None [8]
Unnamed December 13 – 22, 1822 Category 1 hurricane ≥75 mph (120 km/h) Not Specified eastern Caribbean Sea N/A None [8]
Unnamed May 28 – June 5, 1825 ≥Category 1 hurricane ≥75 mph (120 km/h) Not Specified Cuba, United States East Coast N/A 7 [8][10]
Unnamed May 20 – 21, 1838 Tropical storm ≥40 mph (65 km/h) Not Specified Jamaica N/A None [8]
"Amanda" May 24 – 29, 1863 Category 2 hurricane 105 mph (165 km/h) 975 hPa (28.79 inHg) Florida N/A 110 [9]
#1 May 30, 1865 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) Not Specified Caribbean Sea N/A None [5]
#12 November 25 – December 2, 1878 Tropical storm 70 mph (115 km/h) Not Specified Lesser Antilles, Puerto Rico, Jamaica N/A None [5]
#1 May 15 – 18, 1887 Tropical storm 70 mph (115 km/h) Not Specified Atlantic Canada N/A None [6]
#2 May 17 – 21, 1887 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) Not Specified Jamaica, Cuba, Bahamas N/A None [6]
#17 November 27 – December 4, 1887 Category 1 hurricane 80 mph (130 km/h) Not Specified Bahamas N/A None [6]
#18 December 4 – 8, 1887 Category 1 hurricane 80 mph (130 km/h) Not Specified Central Atlantic Ocean N/A None [6]
#19 December 7 – 12, 1887 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) Not Specified Lesser Antilles, Colombia, Nicaragua N/A None [6]
#1 May 16 – 21, 1889 Category 1 hurricane 80 mph (130 km/h) Not Specified Western Atlantic Ocean N/A None [6]
#1 May 16 – 21, 1890 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) Not Specified Cuba N/A "Several" [6][11]
Unnamed May 1 – 6, 1899 Tropical depression 25 mph (35 km/h) 1010 hPa (29.83 inHg) Haiti, Cuba N/A None [6]
#1 March 6 – 9, 1908 Category 2 hurricane 100 mph (160 km/h) Not Specified Lesser Antilles N/A None [6]
#2 May 24 – 31, 1908 Category 1 hurricane 75 mph (120 km/h) 989 hPa (29.21 inHg) North Carolina N/A None [6]
Unnamed February 19 – 21, 1911 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1009 hPa (29.80 inHg) Central Atlantic Ocean N/A None [12]
Unnamed May 22 – 24, 1911 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) Not Specified Central Atlantic Ocean N/A None [12]
Unnamed December 11 – 13, 1911 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1005 hPa (29.68 inHg) Haiti, Cuba N/A None [12]
Unnamed April 14 – 16, 1912 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) Not Specified Central Atlantic N/A None [12]
Unnamed May 5 – 8, 1913 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1003 hPa (29.62 inHg) Northern Atlantic Ocean N/A None [12]
Unnamed April 29 – May 2, 1915 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1003 hPa (29.62 inHg) Central Atlantic Ocean N/A None [6]
#1 May 13 – 16, 1916 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) 990 hPa (29.24 inHg) Cuba, Florida N/A None [6]
Unnamed May 12 – 15, 1922 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1008 hPa (29.77 inHg) Nicaragua N/A None [6]
#4 November 27 – December 1, 1925 Tropical storm 65 mph (100 km/h) 995 hPa (29.39 inHg) Cuba, United States East Coast
Bermuda, Azores
$1.6 million 59 [6][13][14]
#1 May 5 – 11, 1932 Tropical storm 50 mph (85 km/h) Not Specified Dominican Republic N/A None [15]
#1 May 14 – 19, 1933 Tropical storm 45 mph (75 km/h) Not Specified Yucatan Peninsula N/A None [16]
#1 May 15 – 18, 1935 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) Not Specified Hispaniola N/A None [17]
Unnamed May 21 – 26, 1936 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) Not Specified Texas N/A None [18]
#17 December 4 – 6, 1936 Tropical storm 65 mph (100 km/h) Not Specified Eastern Atlantic Ocean N/A None [18]
#1 January 3 – 6, 1938 Category 1 hurricane 80 mph (130 km/h) Not Specified Eastern Atlantic Ocean N/A None [19]
#1 May 19 – 24, 1940 Tropical storm 65 mph (100 km/h) Not Specified Western Atlantic Ocean N/A None [20]
#1 May 22 – 28, 1948 Tropical storm 50 mph (85 km/h) Not Specified Dominican Republic N/A 80 [5][11]
Able May 15 – 23, 1951 Category 3 hurricane 115 mph (185 km/h) Not Specified Bahamas, North Carolina N/A None [21][22]
#1 February 2 – 3, 1952 Tropical storm 50 mph (85 km/h) Not Specified Florida N/A None [5]
Alice May 15 – 18, 1953 Tropical storm 70 mph (115 km/h) 987 hPa (29.15 inHg) Cuba, Florida N/A "Several" [23]
#14 December 7 – 9, 1953 Tropical storm 40 mph (65 km/h) Not Specified Central Atlantic Ocean N/A None [5]
Alice December 30, 1954 – January 6, 1955 Category 1 hurricane 80 mph (130 km/h) 987 hPa (29.15 inHg) Lesser Antilles $600 thousand None [24]
Arlene May 28 – 31, 1959 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) 1000 hPa (29.53 inHg) United States Gulf Coast $500 thousand 1 [25]
#1 May 29 – June 2, 1969 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) Not Specified Western Atlantic Ocean N/A None [5]
#2 May 29 – 30, 1969 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) Not Specified Cuba N/A None [5]
Alma May 17 – 26, 1970 Category 1 hurricane 80 mph (130 km/h) 993 hPa (29.33 inHg) Cuba, Florida N/A 8 [26][27]
Alpha May 23 – 29, 1972 Subtropical storm 70 mph (115 km/h) 991 hPa (29.27 inHg) Southeastern United States $100 thousand 2 [5][28][29]
#1 April 18 – 21, 1973 Tropical depression 30 mph (45 km/h) Not Specified Central Atlantic Ocean None None [5]
#2 May 2 – 5, 1973 Tropical depression 30 mph (45 km/h) Not Specified Central Atlantic Ocean None None [5]
#3 May 19 – 20, 1974 Tropical depression 30 mph (45 km/h) Not Specified Belize, Mexico, Cuba
Jamaica, United States Gulf Coast
N/A None [30][31]
#23 December 9 – 13, 1975 Subtropical storm 70 mph (115 km/h) 985 hPa (29.09 inHg) Northeast Atlantic Ocean N/A None [5]
#1 May 21 – 25, 1976 Subtropical storm 50 mph (85 km/h) 994 hPa (29.36 inHg) Florida N/A None [5]
#1 January 18 – 23, 1978 Subtropical storm 45 mph (75 km/h) 1002 hPa (29.59 inHg) Central Atlantic Ocean N/A None [5]
Arlene May 6 – 9, 1981 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) 999 hPa (29.50 inHg) Cuba, Bahamas N/A None [32]
Lili December 12 – 24, 1984 Category 1 hurricane 80 mph (130 km/h) 980 hPa (28.94 inHg) Hispaniola N/A None [33]
#14 December 7 – 9, 1985 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) Not Specified Western Caribbean Sea N/A None [5]
#1 May 24 – June 1, 1987 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1011 hPa (29.86 inHg) Bahamas N/A None [5]
#1 May 31 – June 2, 1988 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1004 hPa (29.65 inHg) Cuba N/A 37 [34][35]
Karen November 28 – December 4, 1989 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) 1000 hPa (29.53 inHg) Cuba N/A None [36]
#1 May 24 – 27, 1990 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1007 hPa (29.74 inHg) Cuba, Florida None None [37]
One April 21 – 24, 1992 Subtropical storm 50 mph (85 km/h) 1002 hPa (29.59 inHg) Central Atlantic Ocean None None [38]
#1 May 31 – June 3, 1993 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 999 hPa (29.50 inHg) Cuba, Florida None 7 [39]
Nicole November 24 – December 1, 1998 Category 1 hurricane 85 mph (140 km/h) 979 hPa (28.91 inHg) Northeastern Atlantic Ocean None None [40]
Olga November 24 – December 6, 2001 Category 1 hurricane 90 mph (150 km/h) 973 hPa (28.73 inHg) Western Atlantic Ocean None None [41]
Ana April 20 – 24, 2003 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) 994 hPa (29.36 inHg) Florida None 2 [42]
Odette December 4 – 7, 2003 Tropical storm 65 mph (100 km/h) 993 hPa (29.33 inHg) Hispaniola $8 million 8 [42][43]
Peter December 7 – 11, 2003 Tropical storm 70 mph (115 km/h) 990 hPa (29.24 inHg) Eastern Atlantic Ocean None None [42]
Otto November 29 – December 3, 2004 Tropical storm 50 mph (85 km/h) 995 hPa (29.39 inHg) Central Atlantic Ocean None None [44]
Epsilon November 29 – December 8, 2005 Category 1 hurricane 85 mph (140 km/h) 981 hPa (28.97 inHg) Central Atlantic Ocean None None [45]
Zeta December 30, 2005 – January 7, 2006 Tropical storm 65 mph (100 km/h) 994 hPa (29.36 inHg) Central Atlantic Ocean None None [45]
Andrea May 9 – 11, 2007 Subtropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) 1001 hPa (29.56 inHg) Southeast United States coast Minor 6 [46]
Olga December 11 – 12, 2007 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) 1003 hPa (29.29 inHg) Greater Antilles $45 million 25 [46][47]
Arthur May 31 – June 2, 2008 Tropical storm 45 mph (75 km/h) 1004 hPa (29.65 inHg) Belize, Yucatan Peninsula $78 million 5 [48]
#1 May 28 – 29, 2009 Tropical depression 35 mph (55 km/h) 1006 hPa (29.71 inHg) Western Atlantic Ocean None None [49]
Alberto May 19 – 22, 2012 Tropical storm 60 mph (95 km/h) 995 hPa (29.39 inHg) South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia Minor None [50]
Beryl May 26 – 30, 2012 Tropical storm 70 mph (115 km/h) 992 hPa (29.29 inHg) Florida, Georgia, Cuba, The Bahamas $148 thousand 1 [1][51]
Unnamed December 5 – 7, 2013 Subtropical storm 50 mph (85 km/h) 997 hPa (29.44 inHg) Azores None None [52]

Records and statistics[edit]

Satellite image of a developing Tropical storm in the central Caribbean Sea. Clouds extend northeast toward Hispaniola and southeast toward northern South America.
Tropical Storm Odette in the Caribbean Sea in December 2003

In the official Atlantic hurricane database, which dates back to 1851, the first storm to occur outside of the current season was in 1865 in the Caribbean Sea. In the database, sixty-one tropical cyclones have existed between December and May, most recently Tropical Storm Beryl in 2012.[5][6] In addition, there were at least five storms in May and another in December before the start of the official database.[8]

Storms were most likely to occur in May, followed by December. Only one cyclone was reported in March, in 1908, only one Tropical storm has ever occurred in February or April, the 1952 Groundhog Day Storm and Tropical Storm Ana of 2003, and only two tropical or subtropical cyclones have formed in January, the 1938 January hurricane and the 1978 January subtropical storm. Of all cyclones during the off-season, Hurricane Lili in 1984 lasted the longest, for a total of 12 days. Hurricane Epsilon, which formed in November, maintained hurricane status for five days in December 2005, longer than any other storm in December; the previous record was two and a half days, set by Hurricane Lili in 1984. Additionally, Hurricane Alice in 1954–1955 and Tropical Storm Zeta in 2005–2006 were the only recorded cyclones to have spanned two calendar years.[5][6]

Of the off-season storms that struck land, portions of the Caribbean were affected most.[5][6] Hurricane Alice was the only of the cyclones to strike land as a hurricane, doing so to islands in the northern Lesser Antilles; it caused locally heavy rainfall and moderate damage.[24] No hurricanes have ever made landfall in the United States during December, although at one point a storm in 1925 was believed to have done this.[5][53] One century earlier, a hurricane formed in the western Caribbean and struck Florida on or before June 3,[54] which was the earliest date for a United States hurricane landfall.[55] However, there is an unofficial hurricane in 1863 that struck the Florida panhandle, killing 110 people.[9] The deadliest official off-season storm was a tropical storm in May 1948, which killed 80 people in the Dominican Republic.[11]

The year with the most off-season storms was 1887, with a total of five existing in the off-season. Several others had three tropical cyclones, of which only 2003 had three tropical storms. The 1908 season was the only one with two hurricanes forming in the off-season. In five seasons, there were storms both prior to the start of the season as well as after the season ended, those being 1887, 1911, 1953, 2003, and 2007; all but 1911 had tropical cyclones of at least tropical storm status before and after the season.[5][6]

Monthly statistics[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Beven II, John L; National Hurricane Center (December 12, 2012) (PDF). Tropical storm Beryl (Tropical Cyclone Report). United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service. http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/data/tcr/AL022012_Beryl.pdf. Retrieved December 14, 2012.
  2. ^ Staff writer (1938-06-15). "Hurricane Warning Service Expanded". The Evening Independent. Associated Press. p. 14. Retrieved 2010-02-28. 
  3. ^ Staff writer (1964-06-01). "Annual Man Against Nature Battle Opens This Morning". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. United Press International. p. 2. Retrieved 2010-02-28. 
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