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When and Where Do Hurricanes Occur?

By mummey
April 30, 2010, 5:15:58 AM EDT

Hurricanes (by whatever name) are by far most common in the Pacific Ocean, with the western Pacific being most active. In some years, the Philippines are struck by more than 20 tropical storms and typhoons. The term applied to various storms depends on their location. Only one hurricane force storm has ever occurred in the South Atlantic - Hurricane "Catarina" in 2004.

World Map

Below is a map showing where each tropical cyclone has tracked between 1851 and 2007... use our Interactive Tracker to plot the storms on top of road and aerial maps.


When hurricanes strike is also determined by location. Below is a brief description of each basin's "hurricane season." More information can be obtained from the NOAA Hurricane FAQ.

ATLANTIC: Hurricane season in the Atlantic runs from June 1 to November 30. Storms outside of these dates are not unheard of. As you can see from the graph, based on the average of 150 years of storms, activity ramps up in August, and peaks once in early September, then again in October. More statistics are available here. Persons traveling to areas near the Atlantic Basin should exercise caution during the entire Hurricane Season.

Hurricane Season

EASTERN PACIFIC: The Eastern Pacific basin's hurricane season is from May 15th to November 30th, peaking in late August or early September.

WESTERN PACIFIC: The Western Pacific basin's hurricane season is mostly from July 1 to November 30, peaking in late August or early September, though storms can occur year-round.

SOUTH PACIFIC: The South Pacific basin's hurricane season is from October 15 to May 15, reaching a peak in late February or early March.

INDIAN OCEAN: The Indian basin's hurricane season is from April 1 to December 31 for the northern Indian Ocean, and from October 15 to May 31 in the southern region.

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