The 2004 Atlantic hurricane season was an above average season, and a destructive season. This season featured a total of 16 tropical cyclones, 15 named storms, 9 hurricanes, and 6 major hurricanes. This season was the most expensive season, until 2005. The strongest storm and costliest storm was Category 5 Hurricane Ivan, a Cape Verde-type hurricane that caused $23.3 Billion USD in damage.
Alex brought category 1 hurricane conditions to the North Carolina Outer Banks as its center passed just offshore, and later strengthened to a category 3 hurricane while near 38ΕN latitude. Only one other hurricane (Ellen of 1973) reached major hurricane status farther north than Alex. 
Hurricane Charley strengthened rapidly just before striking the southwestern coast of Florida as a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. Charley was the strongest hurricane to hit the United States since Andrew in 1992 and, although small in size, it caused catastrophic wind damage in Charlotte County, Florida. Serious damage occurred well inland over the Florida peninsula.
Frances was a Cape Verde-type hurricane that reached a peak intensity of category 4 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. It affected the Bahamas as a category 3 hurricane and the Florida east coast as a category 2 hurricane.
Gaston was a category 1 hurricane that made landfall along the central South Carolina coast. After moving inland, Gaston produced heavy rainfall across portions of the Carolinas and Virginia. Flooding in the Richmond, Virginia metropolitan area resulted in 8 deaths.
Ivan was a classical, long-lived Cape Verde hurricane that reached Category 5 strength three times on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale (SSHS). It was also the strongest hurricane on record that far south east of the Lesser Antilles. Ivan caused considerable damage and loss of life as it passed through the Caribbean Sea.
Jeanne produced heavy rain over Guadeloupe, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic and caused an estimated 3000 or more deaths in Haiti, from torrential rainfall flooding. Finally, Jeanne hit the northern Bahamas and then the central Florida east coast as a category three hurricane.
Otto was a tropical storm that originated from a mid-latitude baroclinic system. The cyclone remained over the open Atlantic Ocean about midway between Bermuda and the Azores Islands.
In Spring 2005, it was announced the World Meteorological Organization had retired the names, Charley, Frances, Ivan, and Jeanne, for the damage and deaths caused by the storms. They were replaced with, Colin, Fiona, Igor, and Julia for the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season.