What Happens if We Run Out of Greek Alphabet Letters?

We would have to have 45 named storms in a single season in order to run out of Greek alphabet letter.

So what happens when we run out of Greek alphabet letters? We won’t!

Though Zeta starts with the letter Z, Zeta is not the end of the Greek alphabet. There are 24 Greek letters with Zeta being the 6th.

So far this season there have been 27 named storms, including Zeta. The most storms on record in a single season occurred in 2005 which was 28 named storms. We may beat that record this hurricane season, but not even close to clearing 45 letters (English alphabet (with the exception of letters Q, U, X, Y, and Z) + the Greek alphabet).

Now, what about retiring Greek letters if the hurricane is so deadly and/or destructive?

The reason for retiring names is due to obvious reasons of sensitivity. Greek letters do not get retired, however, if a storm is so deadly and/or destructive the Greek letter + the year would be retired. For example, if Alpha were to be retired this year it would not just be “Alpha”, it would be “Alpha 2020”.