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What's in a name: 'H' named tropical systems and Henri

Henri making landfall in New England would be the first time in 30 years

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — It isn't every year that a tropical system in the Atlantic reaches the letter 'H', however in recent years it is almost automatic. 

Retired Names:

Dating back to 1953 when the World Meteorological Organization started naming hurricanes and tropical storms, there have been five hurricanes that have been retired. One that everyone who has lived in the Carolinas, knows very well. 

  • Hattie (1961)
  • Hilda (1964)
  • Hugo (1989)
  • Hortense (1996)
  • Harvey (2017)

All five of these had a peak strength of at least a category 4 but Hattie and Hugo both maxed out at category 5. Hugo will go down in history has the worst hurricane to ever impact the Carolinas and has been the storm everyone compares any other to locally. 

RELATED: This is when the Carolinas historically see the worst hurricanes

Credit: WCNC

History of Henri(s):

This is the sixth time we have had a Tropical Storm or a Hurricane named Henri and only the second time it has become 'Hurricane Henri'. The only other year was back in 1979 (the first year we had a storm with this name). The strongest an Henri has ever grown is Category 1. 

There has been an Henri in 1979, 1985, 2003, 2009, 2015 and now 2021. The hurricane name list will cycle every six years and names will continue to be repeated until they are deadly or strong enough on impact to be retired.

2021 Hurricane Henri is forecasted to make landfall in Long Island and Southern New England. The 1985 version was only a tropical storm but made landfall and faded out over Connecticut.

The last time there was a hurricane that made landfall in New England was 30 years ago from Hurricane Bob. 


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