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MEMA Home > Programs> Communication> News > Question of the Day: Hurricane Frequency in New England

Question of the Day: Hurricane Frequency in New England

Hurricane Katrina - 2005 (Image courtesy National Hurricane Center)


July 8, 2008


How often do we get hurricanes of each category in Maine and New Hampshire?

The National Hurricane Center estimates "return periods" for the various categories of hurricanes for locations along the east and gulf coasts. In this determination, the likelihood of the center of a hurricane passing within 75 miles of a location is estimated. However, because Northern New England does not have many strong hurricanes, it is difficult to determine the frequency of the stronger hurricanes.

Return periods for New England Hurricanes
Category Return Period
  New Hampshire and Southwest Maine Mid- and Downeast Maine
1 30 years 30 years
2 150 years 100 years
3 400 years 200 years



Beth Barton or Lynette Miller


Last update: 07/20/10