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Press Release

October 12, 2015

The Weather Channel Announces Winter Storm Names for 2015-2016

Echo, Hera and Mars among those on this season’s list

ATLANTA – October 13, 2015 - Today The Weather Channel© revealed its list of winter storm names for 2015-2016, which will include Ajax, Goliath, Olympia and Ursula. This marks the fourth year the network has named winter storms with the purpose of simplifying and expediting communications to and from residents in the storms’ paths.

The storm-naming criteria are based on National Weather Service thresholds for winter storm warnings and the number of people in the area forecasted to be affected by the storm. Winter storms will be named whenever the predicted weather exceeds the naming criteria. Storms that do not exceed the criteria may also be named, on occasion, when the impacts are forecast to be especially unusual, historical or significant.

As Mary Glackin, senior vice president of public-private partnerships at The Weather Company, mentioned in a recent post on the American Meteorological Society’s blog, “In this information-saturated world, a headline/hashtag is key. We need to recognize the importance of serving people in the way they find easiest to consume information.” Winter storm names help convey information in an easy-to-use format that allows meteorologists and residents to communicate critical instructions and storm reports.

Looking back over last winter’s storms reminds us of the importance communication and information sharing play in alerting residents to forecasts for storms that could significantly affect lives. During the winter months, many people are impacted by freezing temperatures, flooding, power outages, travel disruptions and other impacts of snow and ice storms.

“The winter storm names enabled simpler and more focused communications around forecasts and preparedness information on The Weather Channel and other media outlets. During big storms like Juno, the names became a handy way for the public to receive and exchange information,” said Bryan Norcross, meteorologist and storm specialist at The Weather Channel.

For a third year, the winter storm names for 2015-2016 are derived from lists created by students from Miss Shupe’s Latin Club at Bozeman High School in Bozeman, MT. The names are taken primarily from Greek and Roman mythology and are short, so they can organically become part of prevalent social media communications via hashtags.

Ferus, from Latin meaning wild or untamed; Selene, goddess of the moon; and Vexo, from Latin meaning I annoy or harass; are a few selections from this season’s list. See all the winter storm names here.

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