If you've been keeping tabs on the weather these days, you'll know that Hurricane Gert is moving her way up along the East Coast.  

It's hard to take a storm name Gert seriously, which is good because it's moving out to sea anyway.   Since 1979, the  World Meteorological Organization moved began naming hurricanes with male and female names for storms in the Atlantic. This helped to streamline communication with all involved and avoid confusion with other storms happening at the same time.

The use of easily remembered names greatly reduces confusion when two or more tropical storms occur at the same time. For example, one hurricane can be moving slowly westward in the Gulf of Mexico, while at exactly the same time another hurricane can be moving rapidly northward along the Atlantic coast.

Every seventh year, names for Atlantic storms are recycled. However, any storm that resulted in costly or deadly outcomes has its name moved to the retired list.  The changes are decided on by a committee at an annual meeting. 1990's Bob, 2005's Katrina and 2012's Sandy are all on the retired list.

While Gert will likely find her name on the list again in 2024, here is the list of remaining names for the 2017 Atlantic Storm Season.  We're no weather experts, but Katia sounds like the storm we don't want to mess with.

  1. Arlene
  2. Bret
  3. Cindy
  4. Don
  5. Emily
  6. Franklin
  7. Gert
  8. Harvey
  9. Irma
  10. Jose
  11. Katia
  12. Lee
  13. Maria
  14. Nate
  15. Ophelia
  16. Phillipe
  17. Rina
  18. Sean
  19. Tammy
  20. Vince
  21. Whitney