Tropical Storm Don strengthened into a hurricane on Saturday, making it the first of the 2023 Atlantic hurricane season.
Tropical disturbances that have sustained winds of at least 39 miles per hour earn a name from the National Hurricane Center.
Once winds reach 74 m.p.h., a storms is classified as a hurricane; at 111 m.p.h., it becomes a major hurricane.
The National Hurricane Center estimated that Don had sustained winds of 75 m.p.h.
Don is the fifth tropical cyclone to reach tropical storm strength this year.
(The Hurricane Center announced in May that it had reassessed a storm that had formed off the coast of the northeastern United States in mid-January, and that it had determined that it was a subtropical storm, making it the Atlantic’s first cyclone of the year.)
But that storm was not given a name retroactively, making Arlene, which formed in the Gulf of Mexico in June, the first named Atlantic storm this year.
Bret and Cindy soon followed, making 2023 the first year since 1968 that there have been two named storms in the Atlantic Ocean in June simultaneously, according to Philip Klotzbach, a researcher at Colorado State University who studies hurricanes.
The Atlantic hurricane season starts on June 1 and runs through Nov. 30.
Don was about 480 miles from Newfoundland, Canada, as of Saturday afternoon and was moving north at 12 m.p.h.
The hurricane was expected to dissipate Monday night or early Tuesday, and it did not pose a threat to land, the Hurricane Center said.
In late May, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted that there would be 12 to 17 named storms this year, a “near-normal” amount, the organization said.
There were 14 named storms last year after two extremely busy Atlantic hurricane seasons, in which forecasters ran out of human names and had to resort to backup lists of Greek letters. (There were a record 30 named storms in 2020.)
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