22 May 2021

Ana kicks off 7th consecutive year with pre-season activity

A lingering low pressure system northeast of Bermuda was just upgraded to Subtropical Storm Ana on Saturday morning, which makes 2021 the seventh consecutive year with a named storm prior to June 1, and Ana is the ninth pre-season named storm in that same period.  [A bit of history: Ana is still an original name from when it was introduced in 1979.]

Ana has peak winds of 45 mph and is nearly stationary but will begin to drift away from Bermuda.  While it could bring stormy and gusty conditions to the island, it is not forecast to strengthen much as it will encounter a more hostile environment by the end of the weekend. A tropical storm watch is in effect for the island.

This early activity barely seems strange anymore.  There have been named storms forming prior to June 1 every year since 2015 now!  The list includes Ana (2015), Alex (2016*), Bonnie (2016), Arlene (2017), Alberto (2018), Andrea (2019), Arthur (2020), and Bertha (2020).  Although there's no trend in the date of first hurricane formation, there is a clear trend in the date of first named storm formation over the past 50 years. In this chart, I do not include Alex (2016) because it occurred in January and was meteorologically a remnant of the 2015 season.

The season officially begins on Tuesday, June 1.  Last year, the season's THIRD named storm formed on that date!  The next name on this year's list is Bill.

If you missed the first two posts of the season which serve as introductions and refreshers, you can find them at:

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