Forecast Calls for Seven Hurricanes in '08

FORT COLLINS, Colo. (AP) - Hurricane forecaster William Gray said there will be seven Atlantic hurricanes, three of them major, during the 2008 season.

Gray's team at Colorado State University issued the prediction six months before the June-November season begins.

The forecast calls for a total of 13 named storms in the Atlantic. It says there is a 60 percent chance that at least one major hurricane will hit the U.S. coastline, compared with an average probability of 52 percent.

"Despite fairly inactive 2006 and 2007 hurricane seasons, we believe that the Atlantic basin is still in an active hurricane cycle," Gray said. "This active cycle is expected to continue at least for another decade or two."

Gray has been forecasting hurricanes for more than two decades, and his predictions are watched closely by emergency responders and others in coastal areas.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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