Popular Science

The conditions to blame for 2017's wildly destructive hurricane season

A perfect storm.

hurricane harvey

Hurricane Harvey making landfall in Texas on August 25, 2017.


It’s been a bad year for hurricanes, and we’re only a little over halfway through with the season. Five of these storms have slammed ashore this summer so far, claiming hundreds of lives and leaving behind unfathomable damage. In some areas, recovery could easily take decades. This marathon of intense hurricanes is a pretty big change from the last couple of years, which brought relatively unremarkable storm seasons. What is it about 2017 that’s so different from years past?

We’ve had a smattering of noteworthy seasons over the and Wilma—but the season was also unusually long. Tropical Storm Zeta, the last storm to hit in 2005, actually survived into the first week of January 2006.

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