As ‘Cyclone Mandous’ Intensifies, Lets also Understand the Naming of Cyclones

By Tuhin Sajjad

Photo: Neenu Vimalkumar

Tropical cyclone Sitrang passed on, and Mandous is frowning to hit. Nowadays tropical cyclone has become a uncommon phenomenon to hit normal human lives. The storms are growing so powerful which needs a lot of precautions.

Tropical’ refers to the geographical origin of these storms which exclusively form over tropical seas like the Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean, Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, Bay of Bengal as well as the Arabian Sea. Usually, these storms strike in the countries of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, the Malay Peninsula, Indonesia, Australia, Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, Japan, China, Mexico, the USA, New Zealand, Palau, the Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Micronesia, Polynesia and many more.

Under such circumstances, to identify each storm exclusively needs individual cyclonic nomenclature. Naming a cyclone is easier to remember than the number and technical terms and also easier for media coverage. It also helps to articulate data over its development to create awareness and take preventive measures.

To tackle this situation, worldwide there are six concerned regional specialized meteorological centres (RSHCs) and six concerned Tropical Cyclone Warning Centres (TCWCs) which decides the naming of the cyclones. Also, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) jointly established the Panel on Tropical Cyclones (PTC) in 1972 as an intergovernmental body. The names given by RSMCs and TCWCs have been rectified and finalized with the approval of PTC.

As per the norms the name of the cyclone should be short, easy to say, kind in nature, and also comprises of maximum eight letters. It shouldn’t be based on faith, gender, politics, religion or any other offensive sentiments.

The names of the six concerned RSMCs are

  1. RSMC Nadi-Tropical Cyclone Centre, Fiji Meteorological Service concerning the South-West Pacific Ocean region.
  2. RSMC La Reunion-Tropical Cyclone Center/ Meteo France concerning the South-West Indian Ocean region.
  3. Tropical Cyclones New Delhi/ India Meteorological Department concerning the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea region.
  4. Tokyo Typhoon Center/ Japan Meteorological Agency concerning the Western-North Pacific Ocean and the South China Sea region.
  5. Honolulu Hurricane Center concerning the Central-North Pacific Ocean region
  6. Miami Hurricane Center/ National Hurricane Center concerning the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, North Atlantic, and Eastern-North Pacific Ocean region.

And the names of the six concerned TCWCs are

  1. Jakarta Meteorological and Geophysical Agency/BMG at Indonesian region.
  2. Wellington Meteorological Services of New Zealand at the Tasman Sea region.
  3. Port Moresby National Weather Service, Papua New Guinea at the Solomon Sea and the Gulf of Papua region.
  4. Brisbane Bureau of Meteorology, Australia at the Coral Sea region.
  5. Darwin Bureau of Meteorology, Australia at the Arafura Sea and the Gulf of Carpenteria region, and
  6. Perth Bureau of Meteorology, Australia at South-East Indian Ocean.

The naming of Tropical Storms over the North Indian Ocean region started in 2004, and the name of each tropical cyclone is proposed by a 13-member country committee of the WMO/ESCAP Panel. Alphabetically names of the 13 member countries namely Bangladesh, India, Iran, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

The list of the names of the upcoming cyclones has been revised and in that list, there are thirteen columns comprising thirteen names of the cyclones each suggested by the member countries. Panel members’ names are listed alphabetically row-wise. The storms’ name will be used sequentially column-wise. The first name will start from the first row of column one and continue sequentially to the last row of column thirteen. The table will be used only once.

Here is a simplified list given for the common people to easily understand the names of the forthcoming cyclones. The name of the country concerned for the nomenclature is given in brackets:

  1. Mandous(UAE), 2. Mocha/Mokha(Yemen), 3. Biporjoy(Bangladesh), 4. Ten(India), 5. Hamoon(Iran), 6. Midhili(Maldives), 7. Michaung/Migjaum(Myanmar), 8. Remal(Oman), 9. Asna(Pakistan), 10. Dana(Qatar), 12. Fengal/Feinjal(Saudi Arabia), 13. Shakhti(Sri Lanka), 14. Montha(Thailand), 14. Senyar(UAE), 15. Ditwa(Yemen), 16. Arnab(Bangladesh), 17. Murasu(India), 18. Akvan(Iran), 19. Kaani(Maldives), 20. Ngamann(Myanmar), 21. Sail(Oman), 22. Sahab(Pakistan), 23. Lulu(Qatar), 24. Ghazeer(Saudi Arabia), 25. Gigum(Sri Lanka), 26. Thianyot(Thailand), 27. Afoor(UAE), 28. Diksam(Yemen), 29. Upakul(Bangladesh), 30. Aag(India), 31. Sepand(Iran), 32. Odi(Maldives), 33. Kyarthit/Kjathi(Myanmar), 34. Naseem(Oman), 35. Afshan(Pakistan), 36. Mauj(Qatar), 37. Asif(Saudi Arabia), 38. Gagana(Sri Lanka), 39. Bulan(Thailand), 40. Nahhaam(UAE), 41. Sira(Yemen), 42. Barshon(Bangladesh), 43. Vyom(India), 44. Booran(Iran), 45. Kenau(Maldives), 46. Sapakyee(Myanmar), 47. Muzn(Oman), 48. Manahil(Pakistan), 49. Suhail(Qatar), 50. Sidrah(Saudi Arabia), 51. Verambha(Sri Lanka), 52. Phutala(Thailand), 53. Quffal(UAE), 54. Bakhur(Yemen), 55. Rajani(Bangladesh), 56. Jhar(India), 57. Anahita(Iran), 58. Endheri(Maldives), 59. Wetwun(Myanmar), 60. Sadeem(Oman), 61. Shujana(Pakistan), 62. Sadaf(Qatar), 63. Hareed(Saudi Arabia), 64. Garjana(Sri Lanka), 65. Aiyara(Thailand), 66. Daaman(UAE), 67. Ghwyzi(Yemen), 68. Nishith(Bangladesh), 69. Probaho(India), 70. Azar(Iran), 71. Riyau(Maldives), 72. Mwarhout(Myanmar), 73. Dima(Oman), 74. Parwaz (Pakistan), 75. Reem(Qatar), 76. Faid(Saudi Arabia), 77. Neeba(Sri Lanka), 78. Saming(Thailand), 79. Deem(UAE), 80. Hawf(Yemen), 81. Urmi(Bangladesh), 82. Neer(India), 83. Pooyan(Iran), 84. Guruva(Maldives), 85. Kywe(Myanmar), 86. Manjour(Oman), 87. Zannata(Pakistan), 88. Rayhan (Qatar), 89. Kaseer(Saudi Arabia), 90. Ninnada(Sri Lanka), 91. Kaison(Thailand), 92. Gagoor(UAE), 93. Balhaf(Yemen), 94. Meghala(Bangladesh), 95. Prabhanjan(India), 96. Arsham(Iran), 97. Kurangi(Maldives), 98. Pinku(Myanmar), 99. Rukam(Oman), 100. Sarsar(Pakistan), 101. Anbar(Qatar), 102. Nakheel(Saudi Arabia), 103. Viduli(Sri Lanka), 104. Matcha(Thailand), 105. Khubb(UAE), 106. Brom(Yemen), 107. Samiron(Bangladesh), 108. Ghurni(India), 109.  Hengame(Iran), 110. Kuredhi(Maldives), 111. Yinkaung(Myanmar), 112. Watad(Oman), 113. Badban(Pakistan), 114. Oud(Qatar), 115. Haboob(Saudi Arabia), 116. Ogha(Sri Lanka), 117. Mahingsa(Thailand), 118. Degl(UAE), 119. Shuqra(Yemen), 120. Protikul(Bangladesh), 121. Ambud(India), 122. Savas(Iran), 123. Horangu(Maldives), 124. Linyone(Myanmar), 125. Al-jarz(Oman), 126. Sarrab(Pakistan), 127. Bahar(Qatar), 128. Bareq(Saudi Arabia), 129. Salitha(Sri Lanka), 130. Phraewa (Thailand), 131. Athmad(UAE), 132. Fartak(Yemen), 133. Sarobor(Bangladesh), 134. Jaladhi(India), 135. Tahamtan(Iran), 136. Thundi(Maldives), 137. Kyeekan(Myanmar), 138. Rahab(Oman), 139. Gulnar(Pakistan), 140. Seef(Qatar), 141. Alreem(Saudi Arabia), 142. Rivi(Sri Lanka), 143. Asuri(Thailand), 144. Boom(UAE), 145. Darshah(Yemen), 146. Mahanisha(Bangladesh), 147. Vega(India), 148. Toofan(Iran), 149. Faana(Maldives), 150. Bautphat(Myanmar), 151. Raad(Oman), 152. Waseq(Pakistan), 153. Fanar(Qatar), 154. Wabil(Saudi Arabia), 155. Rudu(Sri Lanka), 156. Thara(Thailand), 157. Saffar(UAE), and 158. Samhah(Yemen).

So we all have to be concerned as well as ready to take precautions over these tropical cyclones.