2012 hurricane season: NOAA says to expect 3 to 6 more hurricanes

Government forecasters slightly increased their outlook for the storm season on Thursday, calling for 12 to 17 named storms, including five to eight hurricanes, with two to three of those being major.

For the remainder of the season, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration expects six to 11 named storms, including three to six hurricanes with two to three of those being major.

The updated outlook would amount to a slightly busier than normal season, which sees 12 named storms, including six hurricanes, three major.

Gerry Bell, NOAA'S lead hurricane forecaster, said sea surface temperatures are warmer than normal and the Atlantic basin remains in an era of hurricane intensity.

In late May, NOAApredicted nine to 15 named storms, including four to eight hurricanes, with one to three of those being major, with sustained winds greater than 110 mph.

So far, six named storms have emerged, including two hurricanes. The season saw the fastest start in history when four named storms formed before July 1.