The Weather Channel names its first winter storm

November 8, 2012 - 1:33 PM

Superstorm Noreaster

As a reporter from The Weather Channel gets set to do a broadcast on the nor'easter hitting Point Pleasant Beach N.J. , Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012, as workers use heavy equipment to hurriedly push piles of sand back onto the beach that was damaged last week by Superstorm Sandy. Renewed flooding and power outages were expected with the latest storm. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

NEW YORK (AP) — To people who were caught in snarled traffic or had to shovel snow with leaves still on the trees, the storm pulling off the East Coast on Thursday was your basic nor'easter.

To The Weather Channel, it was Athena.

The network has taken to naming winter storms, much like the National Weather Service does for tropical systems. The Weather Channel says the names make the storms easier to identify and draws attention so people have time to prepare.

The National Weather Service isn't recognizing the names, and neither are most news outlets. The government agency sent out an advisory to its personnel on Wednesday reminding them of the policy.