While hurricanes can happen in many areas around the world, we keep a watchful eye on the Atlantic because it impacts our country the most.
The Atlantic tropical storm and hurricane season historically ramps from August through November but we can see them earlier and later than that. The peak is typically in mid-September.
Before each season, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration releases its forecast. They’re predicting an active forecast again for the Atlantic.
This year’s heightened tropical cyclone activity is attributed to the ongoing La Nina pattern which keeps the water warmer in the Atlantic. There will also be lower trade wind activity. The less wind shear, the easier it is for a hurricane to form.
The names are already predetermined by the World Meteorological Organization. They reflect the countries the storms could impact and they’re in alphabetic order. You’ll notice there aren’t any names that start with Q, U, X, Y or Z. That’s because it’s too difficult to find a revolving list of names that start with those letters. So sorry, Quin and Yolanda!
A storm name is replaced when it becomes so deadly and costly that future use of the name would be inappropriate and insensitive. So that means you’ll never hear of another Hurricane Katrina or Hurricane Fran.
In years past when we ran out of names, we would turn to the Greek alphabet. But that became tougher when recently some of those Greek letters had to be retired due to how catastrophic those storms were. So instead, the World Meteorological Organization came up with an alternate list of names that would start with “A” again if we go over our initial given list.