What’s in a Name?

With the arrival of soon to be Hurricane Isaac coming on the same date as the 7 year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s landfall, and in some twist of fate its landfall also projected to be near the New Orleans area, I was asked today if it could have been possible for Isaac to have been named Katrina if it would have been two storms down the line (storm names are alphabetical). After a long explantion as to why this would never be possible, I figured it would be the perfect time to clear up all the confusion about tropical storm names. It is in fact possible to have hurricane names repeat themselves, however this can only happen once every six years. There are six total lists of hurricane names from A-W (with the exception of Q) and these lists are on a six year cycle (names used in 2012 will be used again in 2018). So, reason #1 why Katrina couldn’t have been a name for this storm if we were on “K” when it was named, that name would have been reused last year. Also, when a hurricane is so deadly or costly that it would be inappropriate to name another storm after it, that name becomes retired and another name is chosen to take its place in the six year rotation. Reason #2 why Katrina couldn’t have been a name for Isaac, the hurricane name “Katrina” was retired after the devastation it caused to the Gulf Coast in 2005. Since 195, 76 names have been retired, with the most retired in one year coming in 2005 with 5 names taken off the list. Above is a list of all the tropical storm names for this year! -Greg

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Posted under tropical weather

This post was written by qni_it on August 28, 2012

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