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To better communication with the public, forecasters worldwide use short, distinctive names to describe tropical storms and hurricanes. According to the National Hurricane Center, the practice of naming storms is especially important when exchanging detailed weather information between hundreds of widely scattered weather stations, coastal bases and ships at sea.

Since 1953, Atlantic tropical storms have been named from lists originated by the National Hurricane Center.

The only time that there is a change in the list is if a storm is so deadly or costly that the future use of its name on a different storm would be inappropriate.

In April, the World Meteorological Organization retired four names: Harvey, Irma, Maria and Nate — storms which were responsible for massive destruction. Prior to that, the last hurricane name to be retired was Sandy in 2012.

2018 Hurricane season names:

Alberto  |  Beryl  |  Chris  |  Debby   |  Ernesto   |  Florence  |  Gordon  |  Helene  |  Isaac  |  Joyce  |  Kirk  |  Leslie  |  Michael  |  Nadine  |  Oscar  |  Patty  |  Rafael  |  Sara  |  Tony  |  Valerie  |  William

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