Hurricane Season Far From Over

hurricane hugo charleston s.c. 1989
In Folley Beach, S.C., there are few clouds in the sky and few weather worries on people's minds, and why should there be? There hasn't been a single severe storm all summer.

But as CBS News Correspondent Byron Pitts reports, residents in this region have long memories. Exactly 11 years ago Thursday, it was hit by Hurricane Hugo, a $6 billion disaster that killed 26 people.

"No one is letting their guard down. We know that these things are killers. We watch these things develop," said Joseph Riley, mayor of Charleston, S.C.

So compared to Hugo, this hurricane season's been a breeze. Hurricane Debbie in August broke a few lawn chairs in Puerto Rico and Hurricane Gordon lost steam before he reached shore in Florida last week.

Still, statistically speaking, this could wind up an above-average season. There have already been eight named storms and four hurricanes, one them major — Hurricane Alberto — with his 125-mph winds. He never made landfall.

But, as Max Mayfield of the National Hurricane Center warns, "Any rumor of the end of this hurricane season have been greatly exaggerated."

Mayfield and his staff spent most of Thursday watching three developing systems.

"We have one tropical storm. We have Helene. We have a disturbance. We have a couple, so it's not over yet," Mayfield said.

This year's hurricane season passed its peak 11 days ago, but meteorologists caution: the season doesn't end until Nov. 30, and two of the costliest hurricanes on record occurred in October.

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