In 2015, there has been a total of 22 hurricanes or typhoons that reached a Category 4 or 5 in strength in just the Northern Hemisphere this year. This has been a record number, that was broken by a typhoon named Koppu that ravaged the Philippines as a super typhoon. But since then, Super Typhoon Champi, Hurricane Olaf and Hurricane Patricia added to the total. It is important to note that the record that was broken was just 18 back in 2004.
The year was full of activity, even with three of the Category 4 hurricanes that were running simultaneously. Climate change has a big part of these results, plus the El Nino which is playing a role in the very active Pacific storms this year. The El Nino partially reduced the amount of wind shear in the central and eastern Pacific. The activity in the Pacific also can be attributed to the very warm ocean waters.
In the Pacific basin last year, there have been 8 named storms that developed. They are as follows....Halola, Ela, Iune, Kilo, Loke, Malia, Niala and Oho. This tops a record of just 4 storms in 1982.
One of the most extreme intensity storms was one called Super Typhoon Maysak which reached a category 5 in the end of March 2015. Since then, there has been at least one typhoon or hurricane that reached the categories of 4 or 5 through October.
Below is a list of all 22 hurricanes and typhoons that have reached Category 4 or 5 status so far in 2015, and the month(s) that this occurred. The 2016 season promises to be just as active.