The Met Office and Met Éireann have revealed the names for storms for the coming 2018/19 season. Is your name on the list?
It was only Thursday 13 September when Visit Fylde Coast published the names for next year, and already we’re hearing that the first one is here!
Naming storms began in 2015, so it’s the fourth year that the ‘Name our Storms’ scheme has been jointly run by the two Met Office services.
It was the US National Hurricane Centre which established the pattern of the names alternating between male and female names, back in the 1970’s.
When the first storm of the 2018/19 season appears it will be ‘male’ and named Ali. The second will be ‘female’ and named Bronagh.
Why are Storms given a Name?
The purpose of calling storms by a name is to raise our awareness of severe weather, before it hits and while we can prepare for it.
Naming storms has helped to make people more aware of severe weather, but in a Met Office survey only one third of people said they took action at home after a warning. The purpose of the name is to make us all listen – then we can fasten windows, secure loose items outside and generally make our possessions secure. It’s also advisable to check on the safety of outdoor pets, along with checking on family and neighbours.
A storm is named on the basis of ‘medium’ or ‘high’ potential impacts from wind. It also includes the potential impacts of rain and snow. Storms will be named for weather systems which are expected to lead to an Amber or Red warning being issued by Met Éireann and/or the Met Office’s National Severe Weather Warning Service (NSWWS).
More about Naming Storms
Storms have been given names for many years. Going back to the 16th century, records show that cyclones in the Caribbean were named after saints. Then, in the 1950s the National Hurricane Centre started naming tropical cyclones. Watch this short Met Office video clip which explains more –
Storms visiting the Fylde Coast
The last time the Fylde Coast had particularly ferocious storms was over the winter of December 2013 and January 2014. There were two separate and very similar events only a few weeks apart. A combination of high tides, strong westerly winds and low pressure combined to create storm surges and overtopping.
One event was 5 December 2013 and the next 3 January 2014, both with exceptionally high tides. The coastline from Fleetwood to Lytham was flooded in parts when spring tides were driven to shore by the high winds.
Flood Warnings and Alerts were in force for the coastline from Fleetwood to Lytham throughout the day.
Storms at Cleveleys
These photos are from the storm of 3 January 2014. Click/swipe from left to right to view the gallery.
With high tide at lunch time (12.20pm) the waves were already starting to splash over the sea wall at northern Cleveleys by 11am. Take a look at these photos of the storm in full swing at lunch time. By noon, the waves were overtopping onto the promenade and at high tide the water from the top of their crests was reaching the height of the lamp posts on North Promenade.
Almost an hour after high tide, the waves were still coming over the wall at Cleveleys. Take a look at this video filmed during the first storm on 5 December 2013.
At Lytham the sea water reached the foot of the windmill on the Green. In central Blackpool the promenade was under water for the second time in only a few weeks. With the sea water comes a lot of sand, stones and debris to clear away. The next high tide at midnight brought a second overtopping in the same day.
One in 200 Year Storm – Photos taken in Cleveleys on 5 December 2013
On 5 December 2013, the Fylde Coast experienced a one in 200 year storm event, with high winds, a high tide and low pressure combining to create mayhem!
Foam Flying During Storms
If you’ve never seen the sea foam during storms at Cleveleys it’s quite a sight.
It’s caused by decaying algae in the water. In the right conditions it whips up into a sandy froth which blows off the top of the waves and wobbles to shore. It can reach several feet in depth before collapsing to leave a dry sandy residue that is awful to wash away.
Find out More
See the Visit Fylde Coast website homepage for more of the latest updates.
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