STORMS are expected to hit across Britain for the remainder of 2020 with Alex the latest – but they will all have different names.
Like in America, UK storms are given specific names to help determine which is which as they rip through the country.
What will the next storm be named?
The next storm will be Aiden according to the Met Office.
This will be the first of the new list of names for 2020/21, as they work from September to August.
But of the 21 names listed each year by the Met Office, five could already be used up by the end of autumn as bad weather hits the UK.
A 900-mile wide "Atlantic torment" is expected to hit on Wednesday, September, 30, with Storm Aiden expected to be named.
And with high chances of more storms coming over the next few months, the UK could see Bella, Christoph, Darcy and Evert also used.
What are the 2020 storm names in the UK?
All the names for 2020/21 have already been decided.
The Met Office chooses the names but it asks for members of the public to help by making suggestions every year.
The service decided to start naming storms in alphabetical order back in 2014, in the hope that doing so would make people more aware of them and how dangerous they can be.
A total of 21 names were chosen by Met Office and Met Eireann – whittled down from a total of more than 10,000 suggestions submitted by the public.
One name was picked for each letter of the alphabet, apart from Q, U, X, Y and Z.
Every major storm will be named according to the list, ordered alphabetically.
Among the names on this year's list include Heulwen, Klaas and Saidhbhin.
Last year, Jorge was used – but was not part of the Met Office's naming system, having stuck with Spain's own designation to avoid confusion.
Storms set to batter Britain from September 2020 to August 2021
Why are there no storm names for Q, U, X, Y and Z?
To ensure the Met Office is in line with the US National Hurricane Centre naming conventions, it does not include names which begin with the letters Q, U, X, Y and Z.
This is to ensure consistency for official storm naming in the North Atlantic – to reduce confusion for fellow weather experts, sea captains and pilots.
In America, when all the names in the storm alphabet are used, the naming convention follows the Greek alphabet (Alpha, Beta, Gamma…).
Why did the UK start naming storms?
Analysis has shown that naming storms makes people more aware of the severe weather and helps them prepare for them in advance.
Surveys showed people were more aware of the threat and more likely to take action after hearing the name of a storm, rather than a forecast simply saying bad weather is on the way.
The Met Office and its Irish counterpart Met Eireann decided to follow the US system of giving girls and boys' names to tropical storms and hurricanes.
Storms names for2019/20
The full list of storm names for 2019/2020 is:
- Atiyah (December 6, 2019)
- Brendan (January 11, 2020)
- Ciara (February 5, 2020)
- Dennis (February 11, 2020)
- Jorge (February 27, 2020 – named by AEMet)
- Ellen (August 18, 2020)
- Francis (August 24-26, 2020)
Is there a difference between male and female storms?
A study of American hurricanes has shed light on an alarming pattern, and explained that more people are killed by "female" storms than those with male names.
The reason why is all down to how we subconsciously view gender, since we're more likely to assume that storms with female names will be less dangerous.
This means people end up taking fewer precautions to protect themselves, according to researchers at the University of Illinois.
Incredibly, the 2014 study added that the more feminine the name, the more people a storm is likely to kill.
The researchers even suggested that changing a hurricane's name from Charley to Eloise could triple the number of fatalities.
Co-author Sharon Shavitt, a professor at the University of Illinois, said: "In judging the intensity of a storm, people appear to be applying their beliefs about how men and women behave."
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