Posted by: Calvin | June 1, 2008

Welcome to Hurricane Season!

It is June 1, the first day of hurricane season.  Apparently Arthur’s calendar was off a day.  The season’s first named storm in the Atlantic region was a day early.  It is not a strong storm or a storm that will have any impact on the USA, other than to remind us that hurricane season is here!

The National Hurricane Center released this five-day track forecast cone for Tropical Storm Arthur at 7 a.m. CDT on Sunday, June 1, the start of the 2008 hurricane season. Arthur is expected to be downgraded to a tropical depression as it crosses the Yucatan Peninsula.

This is Arthur’s 3 day forecast.  We have come to think of these forecasts as “cones of uncertainty.”  Usually, we don’t sit around talking about hurricanes unless we are in the 3-5 day cone of uncertainty. 

During the June through November hurricane season people might try to out predict the experts, others stock up on hurricane supplies and others don’t pay any attention at all.   One thing most of us do is watch the weather more often.  I set a weather website on my favorites and look at it daily to see what is happening in the tropics and off the coast of Africa.  I will need to move that site to the top of my favorite list again.

Here is the list of 2008 Hurricane Names:



Here are some facts about hurricane names that I did not know until I moved to South Florida:

  • There are 6 lists of names that are rotated each year.
  • The name list is alphabetical from A to W, excluding Q and U.
  • When the list is exhausted the storms are given names from the Greek Alphabet:  Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, Epsilon, Zeta  (these were used in 2005).
  • A name is retired from the list if there has been a devastating storm bearing that name (retired in 2005 were Rita, Katrina, Stan and Wilma).
  • Since 1979 the names alternate with male and female names.
  • A storm is assigned a number until it reaches Tropical Storm strength, at which time it is given the next name on that year’s list.


I understand that there is a committee of people from various nations that get together to discuss and decide the names to go on the hurricane name list.  I would like to be on that committee.   It doesn’t sound like much work and my guess is they meet in very interesting places!

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