Beryl, Season's First Hurricane, Churns Through Caribbean as Category 5 Storm

Jul 3, 2024

2024 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook

Hurricane Beryl, a massive storm with sustained winds in excess of 157 miles per hour (mph), flattened homes, crippled power grids, and left at least four people dead as it cut a path across the Caribbean Sea late Monday and into Tuesday.

“In half an hour, (the island of) Carriacou was flattened,” Grenada’s prime minister said Monday. About 95% of the archipelago is without power, CNN reported Tuesday morning. At least four deaths were recorded in Grenada and on the nearby islands of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Officials there estimate that 90% of Union Island’s buildings were leveled. 

The warm waters of the Caribbean have fueled Beryl. It has strengthened to a Category 5 storm as it now plows toward Jamaica. Some models project it making landfall there by 8pm Wednesday. The island is under a hurricane warning. Up to a foot of rain is predicted for the nation’s southern coast. So are storm surges of 5 feet or more.

Beryl is the first Atlantic hurricane of 2024. It's the earliest hurricane of Category 3 or higher (sustained winds in excess of 110 mph) recorded in the region in 58 years. It became the strongest June storm ever documented when it reached Category 4 on Sunday. This was shortly before it hit Grenada and the other Windward Islands. 

Beryl’s strength is a bad sign for the rest of the hurricane season, forecasters warn. Waters warmed by climage change breed stronger storms. Thus, seeing one so early could suggest a dangerous summer.  

“Hurricanes don’t know what month it is ...” storm expert Jim Kossin told CNN. “Beryl is breaking records for the month of June because Beryl thinks it’s September.”  

Reflect: How can people prepare for and respond to natural disasters to stay safe and help others?

Question
Based on the information in the infographic, the number of named storms in the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season is predicted to be ______ the historical averages. (Common Core RI.5.7; RI.6.7)
a. significantly less than
b. slightly less than
c. the same as
d. greater than
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