GOOD NEWS: Forecasters Lower Atlantic Hurricane Outlook

Government forecasters are lowering their outlook for this Atlantic hurricane season after a quiet start with no named storms so far.

The National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration on Thursday updated its forecast for the six-month season that runs from June through November. The peak months are August through October.

They now predict a near-normal to below-normal season as the calming effects of El Nino continue to develop.

They forecast seven to 11 named tropical storms, down from a range of nine to 14 in the preseason forecast in May.

Three to six storms could become hurricanes, less than four to seven in the earlier forecast. The new projection says one or two hurricanes could become major storms.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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