A hog farm is inundated with floodwaters from Hurricane Florence near Trenton, N.C., Sept. 16, 2018.
A hog farm is inundated with floodwaters from Hurricane Florence near Trenton, N.C., Sept. 16, 2018.

Hurricanes Florence and Michael, which caused widespread death and destruction in the United States last year, have earned the dubious distinction of having their names retired. 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Wednesday that the two names will be replaced with Francine and Milton, starting with the 2024 hurricane season. 

Damage caused by Hurricane Michael is seen in Mexi
Damage caused by Hurricane Michael is seen in Mexico Beach, Florida, U.S., October 16, 2018.

The United Nations' World Meteorological Organization maintains six lists with 21 names each that are organized alphabetically and alternate between male and female names. 

Each list is used once every six years. The current group goes from 2018 to 2023, with the cycle restarting in 2024. 

Names are retired when meteorologists determine that a hurricane has been so destructive that reusing its name would be insensitive.

The first hurricane name to be retired was Carol, in 1954. So far, 88 names have been dropped from the list.