What’s In a (Hurricane) Name?

What’s In a (Hurricane) Name?

09 Oct What’s In a (Hurricane) Name?

What’s In a (Hurricane) Name?

With hurricane season in Florida continuing until November 1, the possibility exists that there can be a large number of named storms this year.  In 1953, the United States abandoned a confusing two-year old plan to name storms by a phonetic alphabet (Able, Baker, Charlie) when a new, international phonetic alphabet was introduced. That year, the United States began using female names for storms.


In 1979, male and female names were included in lists for the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico.  The practice of naming hurricanes solely after women came to an end in 1978 when men’s and women’s names were included in the Eastern North Pacific storm lists.


As South Florida residents began to assess the damage from the recent onslaught of Hurricane Irma, they might have wondered how she got her name – especially if your residential wood fencing is lying on the ground in tatters.  According to the National Hurricane Center, experience shows that the use of short, distinctive names in written as well as spoken communications is quicker and less subject to error than the older, more cumbersome latitude-longitude identification methods. According to the NHC, the list of hurricane names has been established by an international committee of the United Nations World Meteorological Organization.


For Atlantic hurricanes, there is actually one list for each of six years. In other words, one list is repeated every seventh year. The only time that there is a change is if a storm is so deadly or costly that the future use of its name on a different storm would be inappropriate for obvious reasons of sensitivity. If that occurs, then at an annual meeting by the committee (called primarily to discuss many other issues) the offending name is stricken from the list and another name is selected to replace it.


Hurricane names retired during the past several years include Mathew and Otto (2016), Erika and Joaquin (2015), Ingrid (2013) and Sandy (2012).  Andrew and Katrina are among the other retired hurricane names due to the level of destruction they caused.


If your residential fences or commercial fences are in need of repair or replacement because of the hurricane, it’s a great time to contact Zepco Fence.  You can explore the possibilities of constructing modern wooden fences, PVC fences or many other styles and materials – before the next hurricane hits!

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