Explained: How are cyclones named?
- Cyclone Yaas is expected to make landfall near the Bengal coast on May 26
- Its term Yaas is used for a tree that has good fragrance
- Here are the guidelines that need to be followed while naming a cyclone
The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) on Saturday warned that Cyclone Yaas, which is expected to make landfall near the Bengal coast on May 26, is likely to intensify into a 'very severe cyclonic storm', reports PTI.
A low pressure area formed over the east-central Bay of Bengal and the adjoining north Andaman Sea on Saturday. While a low pressure area is the first stage of formation of a cyclone, it is not necessary that all low pressure areas will intensify into cyclonic storms.
The Cyclone has been named by Oman. The name Yaas is used for a tree that has a good fragrance.
How are Cyclones named?
Katrina, Mala, Helen and Nargis. These are not names of yesteryear Bollywood actresses, but cyclonic storms that wreaked havoc with violent winds and heavy rains.
Cyclones are named by the regional specialised meteorological centres (RSMCs) and Tropical Cyclone Warning Centres (TCWCs). The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) is one of the six RSMCs in the world.
The IMD, after following a standard procedure, names the cyclones developing over the north Indian Ocean, including the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea. It also issues advisories to 12 other countries in the region on the development of cyclones and storms.
Also read: The different categories of Tropical Cyclone
Last year, the IMD released a list of 169 cyclones names provided by the nations present in the panel on tropical cyclones (PTC). While naming a cyclone, some guidelines have to be followed after which the name is selected by the PTC.
The guidelines say that:
(i) the name proposed should be neutral to politics, political figures, religious beliefs, culture and gender,
(ii) the name proposed should not hurt the sentiments of any group of population over the globe,
(iii) the name should not be very rude and cruel in nature,
(iv) the proposed name should be easy to pronounce and not offensive to any one,
(v) the name should not have more than eight letter,
(vi) the pronunciation and voice over should be provided of the proposed name;
(vii) the name should be new, names of tropical cyclone over the north Indian Ocean should not be repeated.
Why are Cyclones named?
To identify the storms in warning messages, as names are far easier to remember than number and technical terms, the practice of naming storms was started years ago. Naming storms makes it easier for the media to report on tropical storms, and increases interests in warning as well as community preparedness. It helps in exchanging detailed storm information between hundreds of widely scattered stations, coastal bases and ships at sea.
At its twenty-seventh session held in 2000 in Muscat, Oman, it was agreed to name the tropical cyclones in the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) and Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) Panel on Tropical Cyclones. The nations included in the panel were Bangladesh, India, the Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Thailand.
In 2018, five more countries were added to it - Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.