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How are hurricanes named?

For those interested in how hurricanes are named – that’s determined by the World Meteorological Organisation, which publishes lists it rotates every six years. There are 10 different lists, corresponding to 10 differing geographic zones, stretching from the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico and North Atlantic to the Northern and Southwestern Indian Ocean zones.

Storms are named alphabetically in the year they occur. So Dorian is the fourth hurricane this year in that zone. The next one will be named Erin. Originally storms were only given female names, but in 1979, men’s names were introduced and now the genders alternate.

The 2019 names will be used again in 2025, unless there is a storm so deadly or costly that using its name again would be inappropriate. For example, Maria, the hurricane that hit the Caribbean in 2017, will not be used again. Nor will Sandy or Katrina, that hit the US in 2012 and 2005 respectively.

You can see a full list of names here.