STATE COLLEGE, Pa., Aug. 1 (UPI) -- The 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season should be near-normal in terms of the number of named storms, despite a quiet July in the Atlantic Ocean, forecasters say.
Meteorologists at AccuWeather.com said with the number of named tropical storms and hurricanes to date factored in, there should be eight additional tropical storms, four of which will become hurricanes, through the rest of the hurricane season.
Of those four hurricanes, two could strengthen into major hurricanes, Category 3 or higher, they said.
From the middle of August through the middle of September -- normal peak time for Atlantic hurricanes -- increased tropical activity should result in an increase in the number of named storms, and the United States could be affected by at least two of them, AccuWeather senior meteorologist Dan Kottlowski said.
While a landfall of a named tropical system on the western Gulf Coast and northern Atlantic Coast is less likely, it remains a possibility, forecasters said.
A gradual fading of the hurricane season is expected in October, depending on how fast and strong the Pacific Ocean El Nino comes on, they said.
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