Hurricane Flags

Gothamist recalls a point last summer when we found it hard to talk about anything besides hurricanes in our ramblings due to the above normal amount of activity. The National Weather Service is indicating that this year will likely be no different calling for a 90% chance of an above normal to normal hurricane season.

Hurricane season runs from June 1 - November 30th with the peak occurring from late August through October. See what contributes to the above normal activity.

So what names can we expect to hear this season? Well the list for 2005 (available from the National Hurricane Center for this year and beyond) includes Arlene, Bret, Cindy, Dennis, Emily, Franklin, Gert, Harvey, Irene, Jose, Katrina, Lee, Maria, Nate, Ophelia, Philippe, Rita, Stan, Tammy, Vince, and Wilma. Where's KP and Joe on that list?

While names were used intermittently over the years for hurricanes,

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, this Nation's weather services began using female names for storms.

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. In 1979, male and female names were included in lists for the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico.

Six lists of names are used in rotation with this year's list occurring again in 2011. Names are removed/added to the list when there is a storm that is so costly or deadly the World Meteorological Organization votes to retire it in the name of sensitivity. As of 2005, 62 names have been retired, the most recent being Charley, Frances, Ivan, and Jeanne.

2005 Prediction2004 ActualNormal
Tropical Storms12-151510
Major Hurricanes3-562

Summary of the 2004 Atlantic Hurricane Season