storm names

Ok so how do storms actually get their names?

Is Babet named after Gilmore Girls?!


The Met Office has released a red weather warning for certain parts of the UK as Storm Babet hits. Many people in Scotland have been told not to travel today, and some schools have even closed as there’s a big flooding risk. Cheers Babet.

First, there was Storm Eunice, and now Storm Babet – it honestly seems as if storm names are getting more and more rogue. So, how exactly are storms given their names?

This is everything you need to know about who decides storm names and why:

Why are storms given names in the first place?

Naming storms is actually quite a recent thing in the UK, with the Met Office first naming a storm in 2015. Storms are given names in order to warn people of the severity of the weather situation.

Basically, if you hear a storm with a name you need to take it seriously.

Who names the storm?

You often hear rumours of storms being named after people’s exes and in fairness, this could be slightly true.

Every year the Met Office requests the public to send in name suggestions and from this, they create a new list. Last year over 10,000 names were suggested and they are then chosen by the Met Éireann, the Met Office, and KNMI (which is the Dutch weather forecast system) in order to reflect the diversity of Britain, Ireland, and the Netherlands.

The names are in alphabetical order and they flip between male and female. The new list begins in September of each year and ends in August of the following year to coincide with the autumn season where there is more potential for storms.

Are there any banned names?

There are no storms to be named which start with the letters Q, U, X, Y, and Z. The reason for this is so they stay in line with US National Hurricane Centre naming conventions. So if you’re called Zara there will never be a storm named after you.

What other storm names are there this year?

Back when Eunice hit, Met Office had published its list of names for the upcoming year.

At that point, we’d had Arwen, Barra, Corrie, and Dudley, before Eunice. The storm after that was called Franklin.

These are the rest of the names for 2o23:

Credit: Met Office website

Featured image credit via Marcus Woodbridge on Unsplash

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