Hurricane Season Is Off To An Early Start

May 23, 2019

Credit: MikeMareen / iStock / Getty Images Plus


The Atlantic hurricane season doesn't officially begin until June 1st. But the first named storm of the season has already formed. Andrea, while not an impressive storm, was strong enough to be named earlier this week. This marks the fifth year in a row that the first named storm formed prior to the official start of hurricane season.

The World Meteorological Organization develops the names. They use six lists of names, which rotate each year. That means every six years, the names cycle back around and get reused. If a hurricane does tremendous damage, such as Katrina, Sandy, or Harvey, the name is retired and replaced by a different name beginning with the same letter. Florence and Michael were added to the list of retired names after last year. The names alternate between male and female, alphabetically and in chronological order starting with A and omitting Q and U, X, Y, and Z.

Here are this year's list of names:

  • Andrea
  • Barry
  • Chantal
  • Dorian
  • Erin
  • Fernand
  • Gabrielle
  • Humberto
  • Imelda
  • Jerry
  • Karen
  • Lorenzo
  • Melissa
  • Nestor
  • Olga
  • Pablo
  • Rebekah
  • Sebastien
  • Tanya
  • Van
  • Wendy