Does the NWS Name Any Large Storm that Affects Several States?

National Weather Service

The word went out a few years ago that the National Weather Service (NWS) was naming any large storm that affected several states – find out how the NWS handles large storms; plus, more of today’s weather news and forecast.

Does the National Weather Service name all large storms?

You may or may not know that the National Weather Service (NWS) applies a name to storms that reach tropical status.

For example, when a storm in the Atlantic Ocean reaches tropical-strength where sustained winds are at 39 miles per hour or above, the storm is given a name. If the winds reach at least 74 miles per hour, the storm becomes designated as a hurricane.

Anytime a hurricane becomes especially destructive, it is put into the storm Hall of Fame, so to speak, where its name is permanently retired.

To date, 89 storms have been noteworthy enough to have had their names permanently retired.

However, the National Weather Service does not give names to large storms that are long-lasting or widely-spanning low-pressure systems.

Where did the idea of naming large storms come from?

The idea of naming large storms had nothing to do with the NWS, but was a practice that began with the Weather Channel.

A few years ago, the Weather Channel began naming low-pressure systems that were moving across the United States. However, that practice has not caught on with others and is not a practice of the NWS.

Likewise, there is no industry standard for naming storms, whether they span several states are not.

Strong winds to bring flooding waves today in 3 states along Lake Michigan

Gusty winds coming out of the north are expected to build lakefront flooding waves today along Lake Michigan affecting shorelines in Cook County/Chicago, Illinois; northwest Indiana and southwest Lower Michigan.

A Lakeshore flood advisory is warning that northerly wind gusts of 30 miles per hour could build 6-10 foot waves around the Chicago area, while 8-10 foot waves are possible along Indiana and Michigan shorelines.

Precautions should be taken in the usual flood-prone areas, which are likely to be flooded.

Extreme wind threat in Montana today

Yesterday saw strong winds in central Montana, and today brings a similar threat, with the National Weather Service issuing a high wind warning for most of north-central Montana.

Gusts in excess of 90 miles per hour are forecast along the Rocky Mountain front, with 60 miles per hour possible elsewhere, while sustained winds between 30-40 miles per hour are expected for most of the area.

Today’s US highs

West: San Francisco 67, Los Angeles 65, Reno 61, Las Vegas 62, Salt Lake City 55, Denver 64.

Northwest & Northern Rockies: Seattle 53, Portland 65, Boise 53, Billings 53, Bismarck 45, Rapid City 45.

Southwest: Phoenix 74, Albuquerque 66, El Paso 75, San Antonio 80, Brownsville 79.

Central & Upper Midwest: Lubbock 78, Dallas 80, Oklahoma City 70, Kansas City 54, Minneapolis 40, Madison 49.

Ohio Valley: Chicago 42, Detroit 54, St. Louis 52, Cincinnati 58, Indianapolis 53.

South: Houston 80, New Orleans 76, Memphis 63, Atlanta 64, Charlotte 66, Jacksonville 78, Tampa 82, Miami 77.

East: Norfolk 71, Washington, D.C. 71, Buffalo 52, New York 65, Boston 66, Bangor 39.