In preparation for the beginning of the north Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June 1 to Nov. 30, the U.S. Census Bureau has released data to help emergency planning, preparedness and recovery efforts. The Bureau's "Facts for Features" for April 21 focuses on population and land area in the area most at risk of hurricanes, which includes the coastal area from North Carolina to Texas.
The facts featured by the Bureau include:
• Approximately 36.8 million people lived in the coastal areas most threatened by Atlantic hurricanes as of April 1, 2010, according to the 2010 Census.
• 12 percent of the nation's population lives in coastal areas threatened by Atlantic storms.
• 14 million people lived in the hurricane threat zone in 1960, according to the U.S. Census for that year. That was 8 percent of the nation's population at that time.
• 163 percent is the measure of growth of the coastal population in the hurricane threat zone between 1960 and 2010.
• 179,015 square miles is the collective land area in of the hurricane threat zone.
• 12 hurricanes formed during the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season, five of which were major hurricanes at Category 3-strength or higher. None of the storms made landfall in the U.S., though Alex made landfall just south of Texas in Mexico, and Earl brushed the East Coast.
Read more Census Bureau hurricane facts.