Hurricane Matthew, a powerful Category 4 hurricane, is churning just off the coast of Florida.
As Weather.com points out, the tropical cyclone has already shattered all kinds of records: It’s the longest-lived Category 4 or 5 storm in the Caribbean; it became the southernmost Category 5 hurricane in the Atlantic basin; and it became the longest lived Category 4-5 hurricane in October.
If Matthew does make landfall in Florida (and there is a probability that the eye of the storm will remain offshore) it could break a significant record here in the States.
Matthew would become the first major hurricane, defined as a Category 3 and stronger, to make landfall in the mainland U.S. since Wilma hit Florida in 2005.
We talked about the why in a post back in 2015. But here’s an updated version of the graphic we used to explore the streak back then:
The lull we’re in now is the longest in recorded history. The previous longest recorded streak for the U.S. was between 1861 and 1868. As we said a couple of years ago, “it’s worth noting that despite this respite, the U.S. has still seen very costly hurricanes — such as Ike and Sandy — that didn’t meet the “major” threshold.”