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How did Oman’s tropical storm ‘Shaheen’ get its name?

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Many are wondering how tropical storm Shaheen, which has ravaged many parts of Oman and affected various regions in neighboring United Arab Emirates and Iran since late Sunday, got its name.

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Shaheen – which has claimed the lives of five victims so far, according to the Associated Press – was first noticed by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) on September 24 as it emerged from the east-Central Bay of Bengal and moved towards Bangladesh. The initial storm was named ‘Gulab,’ which translates to ‘Rose’ in English, according to India’s Free Press Journal.

The Indian Meterological Department (IMD) reportedly issued a warning on the matter, stating that the storm could make landfall in various coastal regions across India.

While the storm eventually lost its speed and strength, the IMD warned that it could re-emerge as cyclone ‘Shaheen’ in two to three days.

Tropical storm Shaheen, which began to emerge in the Arabian Sea on Saturday, was named by Qatar and it translates to “royal white falcon” in English or “Hawk,” Free Press Journal reported.

The next five cyclones that were set to take place after Cyclone Gulab are Cyclone Shaheen, Cyclone Jawad, Cyclone Asani, Cyclone Sitrang and Cyclone Mandous.

Long ago, meteorologists learned that the practice of providing names for storms and cyclones helped people remember the storms and communicate about it more efficiently, leading to better communication and a well-informed public which would, in turn, help them stay safer.

Tropical cyclones are not named after specific people. The names are selected based on the region and what is most familiar to them.

Proposed names for cyclones and storms should be neutral to politics, religions, political figures, gender and cultures. They are chosen by 13 countries in the region: Myanmar, Oman, Thailand, Iran, Bangladesh, India, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, the Maldives, Pakistan, Yemen, and Sri Lanka.

Read more:

Storm update: Shaheen weakens in Abu Dhabi’s al-Ain region

Shaheen storm: Rescue teams continue search for missing victim

Death toll in Cyclone Shaheen rises to five as storm moves into Oman