WASHINGTON – Never will Katrina be so little missed. Nor Dennis, Rita, Stan and Wilma — four other hurricane names from last year's devastating storms that have now been officially retired.
Normally six lists of names are used in rotation for storms in the Atlantic-Caribbean-Gulf of Mexico region, but names of particularly destructive storms are retired.
The decision to retire these five names was made by an international committee of the World Meteorological Organization meeting in Puerto Rico, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced.
They were part of a record 27 named storms and 15 hurricanes that occurred in 2005.
The retired names will be replaced by Don, Katia, Rina, Sean and Whitney.
Some 67 names have been retired since storms were first named in 1953. The first to be dropped, in 1954, were Carol and Hazel. Last year's five is the most retired in a single year.
This year's hurricane names will be: Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debby, Ernesto, Florence, Gordon, Helene, Isaac, Joyce, Kirk, Leslie, Michael, Nadine, Oscar, Patty, Rafael, Sandy, Tony, Valerie, William.
If that number of names suffices.