Meteorology 101: Professor Peters’ Hurricane Naming Quiz

| May 1, 2017 @ 11:00 am

So how about a little quiz to stimulate the brain cells?

It’s rapidly approaching, and yet we’ve already had one, what is it?

The answer is the 2017 tropical storm season for the Atlantic Basin. The season begins on June 1st and ends on November 30th. But if you are a real weather nerd, you already know that a short-lived storm well out into the North Atlantic was named Arlene. She persisted for a little less than 24 hours.

The rest of the players for the 2017 season will be Bret, Cindy, Don, Emily, Franklin, Gert, Harvey, Irma, Jose, Katia, Lee, Maria, Nate, Ophelia, Philippe, Rina, Sean, Tammy, Vince, and Whitney.

Here’s another one: When did the United States start naming hurricanes?

The answer to this one is a little complex. The US actually began naming hurricanes using the phonetic alphabet in 1951. This plan, however, was abandoned in 1953 when a new phonetic alphabet was introduced. So in 1953 the US began using female names for storms. It is interesting to note that an Australian meteorologist, Clement Wragge, began using women’s names for tropical storms before the end of the 19th century.

Here’s one last question: When did the practice of naming hurricanes after women come to an end?

This is a two part answer – it was 1978 in the Eastern North Pacific and 1979 for the Atlantic basin. In those years a combination of men’s and women’s names were used.

So how did you score? Three correct answers puts you in the Hall of Fame for Hurricane Knowledge!

If you have a question about the weather, drop an email to question at weather brains dot com.

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About the Author ()

Bill Murray is the President of The Weather Factory. He is the site’s official weather historian and a weekend forecaster. He also anchors the site’s severe weather coverage. Bill Murray is the proud holder of National Weather Association Digital Seal #0001 @wxhistorian

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