The 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season, by the Numbers

The 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season in 4 minutes and 28 seconds. Video: NOAA Visualization Lab

Today marks the end of the 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season, one of the busiest and costliest storm seasons in U.S. history. This season tied 2010 and 2011 for third place all time with 19 named storms, making the three-year span a rare, extended period of high activity.

In 2012, there were 19 named storms, 10 of which became hurricanes and one of which became a major hurricane. NOAA classified the year as "above normal" based on the number, intensity, and duration of all tropical storms and hurricanes, saying that 10 seasons exceeded 2012 in the last three decades in terms of the combined effect of the three previously mentioned factors. The only major hurricane of the year was Michael, a Category III storm that died out over the Atlantic Ocean, but the storm that people will talk about when they mention 2012 is, of course, Sandy.

“This year proved that it’s wrong to think that only major hurricanes can ruin lives and impact local economies,” said Laura Furgione, acting director of NOAA’s National Weather Service. “We are hopeful that after the 2012 hurricane season, more families and businesses all along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts become more ‘weather ready’ by understanding the risks associated with living near the coastline.”

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