You asked: Weather Channel decides to name winter storms

Published 1:41 pm Saturday, December 22, 2012

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You asked: When did they start naming winter storms?


FRANKLIN—The Weather Channel in October began naming winter storms.

The storm raging across portions of the country and bringing high winds to Western Tidewater is called Draco, named after a 7th century legislator of Athens, Greece.

Other named storms this year have been Athena, Brutus and Caesar.

“On a national scale, the most intense winter storms acquire a name through some aspect of pop culture now, social media, for example Snowmaggeddon and Snotober,” Tom Niziol, winter weather expert for The Weather Channel, said in a news release.

“We believe this can be a useful tool on a national scale in the United States,” Niziol said. The fact is a storm with a name is easier to follow, which will mean fewer surprises and more preparation.”

The Weather Channel’s goal is to better communicate the threat and impact of storms.

Until this year only hurricanes have been named in North America. Naming winter storms will occur within three days prior to it hitting to make sure the system will have a significant effect on larger populations.

The National Weather Service has nothing to do with naming storms.

“The Weather Channel is naming storms we have nothing to do with it,” said Lyle Alexander, a meteorologist with the NWS in Wakefield. “I have no comment on the naming because it doesn’t deal with us.”