With 19 named storms, 2010 was the third busiest hurricane season on record. Of those 19, 12 storms would become hurricanes. The only time we’ve seen more was the 15 storms in 2005 that included Katrina and Rita. Five of those managed to gain Category 3 status or higher.
Alex: This hurricane churned in the Bay of Campeche, and eventually gained Category 2 status. This was the first hurricane to form in the Atlantic basin in June since Hurricane Allison in 1995. Alex made landfall along the Northeastern coast of Mexico, bringing extensive flooding to areas of Mexico and South Texas.
Tropical Depression 2: With barely time to take a breath after Alex hit, Tropical Depression 2 moved ashore on South Padre Island just shy of Tropical Storm strength. The system was never given a name, but it did cause extensive flooding in South Texas and once again areas of Mexico. Downtown Monterrey became a raging river and 17 inches of rain reportedly fell in the area in a few days.
Tropical Storm Bonnie: Bonnie traveled over the Bahamas as a minimal Tropical Storm before eyeing Florida. After moving back into the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, the storm was expected to intensify to near-hurricane strength. Instead, the storm dissipated and moved ashore in Southeastern Louisiana and Southwestern Mississippi prompting a few severe thunderstorm and tornado warnings.
Tropical Storm Colin: Colin remained offshore and while briefly maintaining 60 mph winds, only brought rain and gusty winds to Bermuda.
Tropical Depression 5: While in the Northeast Gulf of Mexico, the system suspended operations to drill a relief well. It brought heavy rain to the Eastern gulf coast, but did no real damage.
Hurricane Danielle: Danielle strengthened to a Category 3 hurricane, becoming the first major hurricane of the season. It eventually became a Category 4 hurricane before encountering stronger wind shear and colder waters as it moved further North. Two people drowned after being caught in rip currents caused by Danielle, and the storm made it as far North as Newfoundland before dissipating.
Hurricane Earl: Earl was the second major hurricane of the season. Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands were battered by the storm and the Category 4 Hurricane brought $150 million in damage to the Caribbean. The storm headed North, toward New England, but the Northeast only saw minimal impact as the storm weakened to a Tropical Storm East of Delaware and Pennsylvania.
Tropical Storm Fiona: Fiona skipped Tropical Depression status, but had trouble getting any stronger. Winds briefly maxed out at 65 mph, but were downgraded to a Tropical Wave just south of Bermuda, only bringing an inch of rain to the island.
Tropical Storm Gaston: The shortest lived storm of the season. Many think the gun was jumped in naming Gaston, in that data only supported winds of 35 mph, short of the 39 needed for a Tropical Storm. Almost as soon as it was named, the storm fell apart and did no damage.
Tropical Storm Hermine: The storm that most impacted the Brazos Valley. As the Pacific’s TD 11 leftovers moved into the Bay of Campeche, the storm intensified quickly. The storm came just shy of Hurricane status, with winds of 70 mph just before landfall in Northeastern Mexico. The storm turned North and brought significant flooding to parts of the state. Over 16” of rain fell in Georgetown, and Waco saw over 8” in the two days that Hermine ravaged parts of the state. 8 were killed in Texas and Oklahoma from the extensive flooding. Here in BCS, we only saw around 3”, but still plenty of rain fell to cause minor flooding in the area. Tornadoes were reported in Austin, and several severe storms were reported in the Brazos Valley.
Hurricane Igor: The strongest storm of the season. The storm nearly reached Category 5 intensity, but weakened before heading for Bermuda. The storm hit the island as a Category 1, but the enormous storm held together long enough to produce Tropical Storm force winds as far North as Newfoundland, killing 1.
Hurricane Julia: When Julia became a Category 4 storm, it was the first time since 1929 that two category 4 storms were churning in the Atlantic at the same time. The storm was later absorbed by another extratopical storm.
Hurricane Karl: This major storm was the first in the Gulf since Hurricane Ike in 2008. The storm hit the eastern coast of Mexico, bringing more flooding to already flooded parts of the country.
Hurricane Lisa: The storm remained in the Eastern Atlantic, and only briefly maintained Hurricane status.
Tropical Storm Matthew: The storm made landfall along the coast of Belize, following the path of many of this season’s predecessors, but rather than turning north in the Bay of Campeche, it maintained a more Westerly route, and the most battered parts of Mexico were spared the heavy rain.
Tropical Storm Nicole: Briefly a tropical storm before it was absorbed by a larger mid-latitude storm to the North. Nicole only lasted 6 hours before dissipating into a remnant low. The leftovers of this storm headed north all the way to Canada where it caused severe flooding and several fatalities.
Hurricane Otto: This storm in the extreme eastern Caribbean Sea moved out into the open Atlantic waters and continued to move Northeast. The storm did no damage, but the remnant low of Otto made it all the way near Portugal before finally dissipating.
Hurricane Paula: Only the fifth storm ever to be given a “P” name in the Atlantic. The ninth storm of the season eventually became a Category 2 hurricane before succumbing to the effects of strong wind shear, but still impacted Cuba for several days.
Hurricane Richard: Yet another storm to cross the Yucatan Peninsula in 2010. This is only the third time an “R” name has ever been used in the Atlantic. Richard moved inland over Belize, and then headed into the Bay of Campeche. Unlike other storms, it didn’t do much once it was there. The storm quickly dissipated as it moved North in the Gulf of Mexico.
Hurricane Shary: Shary stayed well away from land, and despite its very small size, became a Category 1 hurricane. The storm was so small in fact, that if it weren’t for microwave satellite images, we likely would have never known it was there.
Hurricane Tomas: The last storm of the season remained in the Atlantic for a week and a half, and did extensive damage in the Caribbean before moving into the open waters of the Atlantic. 41 people were killed before the storm moved out, 14 of which were in St. Lucia.