Fiona and Ian retired as hurricane names due to death and destruction
Fiona and Ian have been retired from the list of Atlantic hurricane names due to the death and destruction caused, the World Meteorological Organization announced today.
The tropical cyclones wreaked paths of misery across Central America, the Caribbean, the United States, and Canada last year.
Fiona will be replaced with Farrah on the rotating alphabetical list, and Idris will replace Ian.
The near-Category 5 Hurricane Ian was one of the most powerful hurricanes to ever hit Florida when it slammed into state in September with 155mph winds, heavy rain, and a powerful storm surge that overwhelmed communities.
One hundred and fifty people were killed, according to officials. The government ranked Hurricane Ian as the costliest US disaster of 2022 with nearly $113 billion in damages.
In the same month, Hurricane Fiona tore through the Caribbean, wreaking havoc in the Lesser Antilles, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic and the Turks and Caicos.
It spun out into ocean before coming back ashore in Canada as a post-tropical cyclone where it caused more loss of life and became the costliest extreme weather event on record in Atlantic Canada.
Fiona devastated Puerto Rico with extreme flooding amid ongoing recovery from 2018’s catastrophic Hurricane Maria which led to the deaths of more than 3,000 people.
Hurricane Fiona caused $3bn in damage across the Caribbean and Canada and was responsible for 29 direct and indirect deaths.
The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) uses names to better communicate storm warnings to communities along with life-threatening danger. Names are repeated every six years on the Atlantic hurricane list unless a storm is so deadly that it is removed from the list.
A total of 96 names have been taken off the list since it started in 1953.
Tropical cyclones, which are becoming more powerful and unpredictable due to the climate crisis, cause an average of 43 deaths and $78m in financial losses per day around the world, WMO reports.
The UN agency is rolling out a global early warning system to better prepare for extreme weather, particularly in the most exposed and vulnerable communities.