The National Climate Prediction Center forecasts a tropical season slightly more active than normal with 12 to 16 named storms, 6 to 9 hurricanes and 2 to 5 major hurricanes. The average number is 10 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 2 major hurricanes. Overall the center predicted a 90 percent likelihood of an average or above normal season. The experts didn't predict whether, where or when any of these storms might hit land, and officials stressed that coastal residents should always be prepared. About a month ago Colorado State University weather researcher William Gray predicted 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes and 4 major hurricanes this year.