U.S. meteorologists are predicting an above-normal hurricane season for the Atlantic Ocean this year.

The official government forecast Monday predicts that 12 to 15 tropical storms will form in the Atlantic, with 7 to 9 becoming hurricanes, and three to five becoming major hurricanes.

The numbers are similar to last year's forecast, which preceded a wave of destructive hurricanes across the Caribbean and the U.S. state of Florida.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will update its forecast in early August, just before the Atlantic hurricane season hits its peak.

U.S. meteorologists predict a below-normal hurricane season in the Eastern and Central Pacific. They say the area may see six to eight hurricanes, with two to four of them becoming major storms.