By Giovanna Maselli

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Hurricane researchers predict Florida has a 61% chance of being hit by a hurricane and 27% of a major hurricane this season.

As the state heads into its peak hurricane months from August through October, researchers at Colorado State University released their forecast saying they expect an “above-average Atlantic hurricane season.”

They estimated there would be 11 more named storms over the Atlantic after August 1st. Of those, they expect 8 to become hurricanes and three to be major hurricanes reaching category 3, 4, or 5 meaning at least 111 miles per hour winds.

Those numbers do not include systems that had already formed including Tropical Cyclones Arlene, Bret, Cindy, Don, Emily and the latest one – Franklin.

Researchers say this is due in part to a warmer than normal tropical Atlantic.

The team says they based their forecasts on over 60 years of historical data that included looking at things from Atlantic sea temperatures to sea levels to wind shear levels.

According to their forecast, this hurricane season is showing similar characteristics to past seasons like 1953, 1969, 1979, 2001 and 2004.

“In general, most of these seasons experienced somewhat above-average activity, with 2004 being an extraordinarily active season,” said research scientist and lead author of the report  Phil Klotzbach.

The CSU forecast only gives an estimate of the activity and is not an exact measure.

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