HOUSTON - Eight years ago on September 24, Hurricane Rita was bearing down on Louisiana and threatening Texas. The 2005 storm was the most intense storm ever recorded in the Gulf of Mexico. Rita's strength wasn't the only unique thing that made the hurricane a rarity.
"You can still get a storm, but it's fairly rare this time of the year," KPRC Local 2 Hurricane Expert Bill Read said.
The southeast Texas coast has been hurricane-free so far in 2013. However, you shouldn't let your guard down.
On Tuesday, the Houston Chronicle declared the Texas hurricane season was over.
Bill Read, who is also the former Director of the National Hurricane Center, isn't ready to call it yet.
"I have an old rule of thumb that is very conservative," he explained. "I wait until there have been three good fronts that push off of the coast and into the Gulf before I raise the flags and say we're done."
Our first cold front of the season swept through this past weekend, a good sign the rest of the season will stay quiet for Texas. Those fronts help steer hurricanes away from southeast Texas and push them east.
"Now we start looking to the Caribbean for where they will form, and then they will move north of the Caribbean more towards Florida or the Bahamas," said Read.
The calendar is on our side too. Since 1842, only four hurricanes have hit the Texas coast after September 24. That means there's about a one in 50 chance that Texas is impacted this year.
In the short term, Read mentioned at least for the next seven to 10 days he doesn't see anything "in the [weather] pattern that would suggest a storm coming our way."
A hurricane-free 2013 would mean five years without a direct hit on Texas. The last was Hurricane Ike which struck five years ago this month.
Hurricane season officially ends November 30.
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