Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30. To become a named storm, a tropical cyclone must have maximum sustained winds of 39-73 mph. Hurricanes must reach 74-110 mph, while major hurricanes have winds of 111 mph or greater.
The report, released annually by the Tropical Meteorology Project at Colorado State, calls for a 72 percent chance that a major storm will strike U.S. coastline. The average for the last century is 52 percent.
Such chances for the East Coast are 48 percent, compared to an average over the last century of 31 percent.
Most forecasters had predicted a near-normal season in 2012, with about a dozen named storms. It appeared an El Niño might form, and high wind shear associated with that climate phenomenon generally disrupts tropical cyclone formation.
But that El Niño never materialized, and still isn't expected to this year.
Those conditions allowed for the busy 2012 season, which included many storms that strengthened enough to warrant names but did not severely affect land. But, of course, the devastation of Hurricane Sandy in New Jersey and New York showed that it only takes one storm to punctuate a storm season.