Though prime Atlantic hurricane season is August, September and October, July storms aren't unheard of — just look at a storm threatening to form along the Gulf Coast this week.
July hurricanes "do happen," Phil Klotzbach, a meteorologist at Colorado State University, told USA TODAY. "Typically they’re not major hurricanes."
About 8% of the Atlantic hurricane season's named storms from 1851 have occurred in July, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association's Hurricane Research Division. Of the 125 July tropical storms, 58 have been hurricanes and 26 have hit the United States.
The formation of storms in June and July doesn't indicate how active a hurricane season will be later in the summer, Klotzbach said. What's important is whether storms form in places such as the coast of Africa, he said.
"Storm activity in June and July has little correlation with what happens the rest of the way," Klotzbach said. "The only thing that will give you a bit of a tip-off is if you have storms forming in the deeper tropics."
There have been a few notable July storms in recent years:
Hurricane Dennis, July 10, 2005: The Category 3 storm hit the western Florida panhandle. It was the strongest hurricane to have made landfall in the U.S. in July.
Hurricane Arthur, July 3, 2014: The Category 2 hurricane hit North Carolina and was the most recent storm to reach the U.S. in July.
Hurricane Dolly, July 23, 2008: Dolly was a Category 1 and was the most recent to reach land along the Gulf Coast, in South Padre Island, Texas.
Tropical Storm Emily, July 30, 2017: Emily, which hit Florida, was the most recent tropical storm to make landfall in July.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Hurricanes in July happen: A look at past July storms