Tropical cyclone names

Tropical cyclones are named to help with communication about these dangerous storms. Names raise the profile of the cyclone, heightening public awareness and reducing confusion if multiple cyclones occur at the same time.

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How do cyclones get their names?

The Bureau maintains a list of names, arranged alphabetically and alternating between male and female.

The first cyclone name for the 2020-21 season is highlighted. The names in red are due to be retired.

  Australian Region Names (Pronunciation in brackets)
A Anika Anthony Alessia Alfred Ann
  (ah-ni-ka) (an-thuh-nee) (ah-les-ee-uh) (al-fred) (an)
B Billy Bianca Bruce Blanche Blake
  (bil-ee) (bee-ahng-kuh) (broos) (blanch) (bleyk)
C Charlotte Courtney Catherine Caleb Claudia
  (shahr-luht) (kawrt-nee) (kath-rin) (kei-luhb) (klaw-dee-uh)
D Dominic Dianne Dylan Dara Damien
  (dom-uh-nik) (dai-an) (dil-uhn) (dar-uh) (dei-mee-uhn)
E Ellie Errol Edna Ernie Esther
  (el-ee) (er-uhl) (ed-nuh) (ur-nee) (es-ter)
F Freddy Fina Fletcher Frances Ferdinand
  (fred-ee) (fee-nuh) (flech-er) (fran-sis) (fur-din-and)
G Gabrielle Grant Gillian Greg Gretel
  (gab-ree-el) (grant) (jil-ee-uhn) (greg) (gre-tuhl)
H Herman Hayley Hadi Hilda Harold
  (hur-muhn) (hei-lee) (hah-dee) (hil-duh) (har-uhld)
I Ilsa Iggy Ivana Irving Imogen
  (il-suh) (ig-ee) (ee-vah-nuh) (ur-ving) (im-uh-jen)
J Jasper Jenna Jack Joyce Joshua
  (jas-per) (jen-uh) (jak) (jois) (josh-oo-uh)
K Kirrily Koji Kate Kelvin Kimi
  (kier-uh-lee) (koh-jee) (keit) (kel-vin) (kim-ee)
L Lincoln Luana Laszlo Linda Lucas
  (ling-kuhn) (loo-ah-nuh) (laz-loh) (lin-duh) (loo-kuhs)
M Megan Mitchell Mingzhu Marco Marian
  (mee-guhn) (mich-uhl) (mingzoo) (mahr-koh) (mar-ee-uhn)
N Neville Narelle Nathan Nora Niran
  (nev-uhl) (nuh-rel) (nei-thuhn) (nawr-uh) (ni-ruh-n)
O Olga Oran Olwyn* Owen Odette
  (ol-guh) (aw-ran) (ol-win) (oh-uhn) (oh-det)
PQ Paul Peta Quincey Penny Paddy
  (pawl) (pee-tuh) (kwin-see) (pen-ee) (pad-ee)
R Robyn Riordan Raquel Riley Ruby
  (rob-in) (rier-duhn) (rah-kel) (rai-lee) (roo-bee)
S Sean Sandra Stan Savannah Seth
  (shawn) (san-druh) (stan) (suh-van-uh) (seth)
T Tasha Tim Tatiana Trevor Tiffany
  (tash-uh) (tim) (ta-tee-ah-nuh) (trev-er) (tif-uh-nee)
UV Vince Victoria Uriah Veronica Vernon
  (vins) (vik-tawr-ee-uh) (yoo-rai-uh) (vuh-ron-i-kuh) (vur-nuhn)
WXYZ Zelia Zane Yvette Wallace
  (ziel-ee-uh) (zein) (ee-vet) (wol-is)  

Guide to vowel sounds in this table:

ei - "rain", ai - "bite", ee - "sheep", oh - "flow", ah - "bar", aw - "more", oi - "joy", a - "bat", oo - "zoo", uh - "cup", e - "net", i - "hill", o - "hot", ie - "ear", ahng - "hung", ur - "turn".

Requesting a name to be added to the list

We receive many requests from the public to name tropical cyclones after themselves, family members or friends. We can't grant all these requests as they far out-number the number of tropical cyclones that occur in the Australian region.

To have your suggestion considered please submit a written request (including pronunciation of the name) to:

Manager Tropical Cyclone and Extreme Weather
Bureau of Meteorology
GPO Box 1289
Melbourne VIC 3001

Please note that even if a suggested name is accepted, it will be more than a decade before that name is allocated to a cyclone.

Coordination with neighbouring countries

Before names are added to the Australian list, they are approved by neighbouring countries through the World Meteorological Organization Regional Tropical Cyclone Committees. We do this to avoid duplication and ensure that the cyclone does not need to be renamed when it moves across borders.

If a cyclone forms in an adjacent region (such as Indonesia or Fiji) it will be named there and will keep that name if it moves into the Australian region. Similarly, if a tropical cyclone is named in the Australian region and then moves into a neighbouring region, the Australian name will continue to be used.

Retiring a cyclone name

If a cyclone severely impacts the coast, resulting in significant damage and potentially loss of life (e.g. Larry in 2006 and Tracy in 1974), its name is permanently retired from the list and replaced with another of the same gender and first letter.