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US forecasters gain confidence that the Atlantic hurricane season will be a breeze

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MIAMI — Forecasters are even more confident that this Atlantic hurricane season will be a breeze.

But the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration still warns coastal residents to be vigilant as the six-month season hits its peak.

NOAA's Climate Prediction Center on Thursday gave its forecast calling for a below-normal hurricane season a 90 percent degree of accuracy. It's the highest probability for a below-average season since NOAA began issuing seasonal forecasts in 1998.

Forecasters say El Nino has strengthened as predicted, while atmospheric conditions and cool ocean temperatures across the tropics aren't good for storm development.

NOAA expects six to 10 named storms, with one to four strengthening into hurricanes with top sustained winds of at least 74 mph.

Three tropical storms have formed in the Atlantic this year.

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