Forecaster calls for 5 hurricanes in 2006

Sept. 1, 2006 at 1:38 PM

MIAMI, Sept. 1 (UPI) -- A U.S. hurricane expert predicts a more average storm season this year instead of the hyperactivity of recent years.

A team led by William Gray of Colorado State University expects 13 named storms and five hurricanes in 2006. Two of these will grow into intense events with 110 mph winds, the forecasters say.

The seasonal averages over the past 40 years are 11 tropical storms, six hurricanes and two intense hurricanes, the Miami Herald reported.

So far this year, there have been five named storms with only Ernesto developing briefly into a hurricane.

Last year was different, producing a record 28 named storms and 15 hurricanes, seven of them including Katrina and Wilma intense.

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