Original article from Kent Live
The Met Office is searching for the next round of names ahead of the next storm season, and the public are once again being asked for their input.
The tradition of naming storms has produced some gems in recent years – like 2017's Storm Brian that wreaked havoc in Kent.
However, many may be blissfully unaware that the public are the ones behind the names of our extreme weather patterns.
There are some criteria – meaning that obviously comedic names won't be selected – but generally speaking the public decide what the storms are called.
Signing up to the KentLive newsletter means you'll get the latest news direct to your inbox twice a day.
It couldn't be simpler and it takes seconds – simply press here, enter your email address and follow the instructions. You can also enter your email address in the box below the picture on most desktop and mobile platforms.
You can also sign up to our website and comment on our stories by pressing here and signing in.
This means that with enough collective effort and a bit of luck, your uncle Clive could be the namesake of the next mid-February hailstorm that ruins your weekend away.
The naming process is carried out in partnership with Met Éireann and KNMI, the forecasting services for Ireland and the Netherlands respectively, with the goal of helping the media and the public communicate more effectively about the impacts of severe weather events.
Each country's weather organisation gets to select the letters they'll take name suggestions for – excluding Q, U, X, Y and Z – and trim the selections down to best reflect the diversity of their communities.
The Met Office has made the bold move of opening the choice up to the internet, allowing you to submit a suggestion on their website – and you can submit as many as you want.
You can even add a reason for your name choice, and a strong explanation might just bump your choice up in the selection process.
Head of Civil Contingencies at the Met Office Will Lang said: “It’s great to go out to the UK public to get some suggestions of names.
"It’s incredibly important that everyone understands the potential impacts of severe weather and if having the public submit names for our next round of storms helps them engage in the subject then it’s a great way of raising awareness.
“When storms come, we are obviously at the forefront of assessing its impacts on the people of the UK, and communicating that information succinctly is incredibly important during those times.
"That’s why storms need names, so people, the media and our meteorologists can better speak about potential impacts when a storm is in the forecast.
“Name our storms is also a great example of international collaboration and we look forward to working further with Met Éireann and KNMI during the next storm season to help keep the public safe.”
When the criteria for naming a storm are met, either the Met Office, Met Éireann or KNMI can name a storm, providing it hasn’t already been named by another European meteorological group.
Entries close on June 28, 2021 and will then be announced in September – so be sure to get your shouts in early if you want to be able to point at a wall of blue on the weather forecast and tell your friends that it was, in fact, you that named it.