Hurricane Facts

Facts Chief

17 Aug 2016

Table of Contents
  1. Season: Depends on which ocean
  2. Categories: 5 categories, based on wind speed
  3. Definition: An ocean storm with violent winds
  4. Names: Given in alphabetical order
  5. Causes: Ideal weather conditions
  6. Scale: Refers to the different categories
  7. Other Names: Typhoons, tropical cyclones
  8. Where: 5 to 15 degrees latitude north and south of equator
  9. Stages: 6 (Tropical Wave-Hurricane)
  10. Speeds: Up to 200 mph
  1. Causes: Hurricanes Need Ideal Weather Conditions to Form
  2. Origin: Hurricane Is a Native American Word
  3. Scale: There Are 5 Hurricane Categories
  4. Damage: Slow Hurricanes Can Be Just As Dangerous
  5. Names: Hurricanes Are Named in Alphabetical Order
  6. Preparedness: If You Can’t Evacuate, You Must Prepare
  7. Deadliest: Hurricane Katrina Was Not the Deadliest Hurricane in the US
  8. Season: Hurricane Season Is Different in Each Ocean
  9. Damage: Hurricanes Are Becoming More Costly
  10. Scale: A Tropical Storm Is Different From a Hurricane
  1. Other Planets Have Hurricanes
  2. Hurricanes Can’t Form at the Equator
  3. Hurricanes Are Necessary
  4. Tornadoes Can Be Spawned from a Hurricane
  5. There Are Just a Handful of Hurricanes Each Year

Hurricanes Need Ideal Weather Conditions to Form

Hurricane facts reveal that these giant storms can only form over ocean water that is 80 degrees Fahrenheit or warmer. The atmosphere above the water must get cooler the higher it is. Wind needs to be blowing in the same direction to force air upward from the top of the ocean. Clouds begin to form and, as the wind flows out of the clouds, air below is able to rise. The humid air combined with the wind speed creates what is known as a hurricane.

Hurricane Is a Native American Word

The powerful storms were given their now common name by the Taino Native Americans. The word means “evil spirit of the wind”. Hurricanes can reach speeds of over 155 mph, causing extensive damage to buildings and landscapes, and leading to high death tolls if people are unprepared.

There Are 5 Hurricane Categories

Hurricane facts show that there are five different categories applied to hurricanes. Category 1 has wind speeds of up to 95 mph with minimal damage. Category 2 hurricanes reach wind speeds of 100 mph and will do moderate damage. Category 3 hurricanes will do extensive damage with wind speeds of up to 130 mph. Category 4 storms can reach speeds of 155 mph while causing extensive damage. Category 5 hurricanes are the strongest, causing catastrophic damage and having winds higher than 155 mph.

Slow Hurricanes Can Be Just As Dangerous

Many people believe that if a hurricane is slow moving with lower wind speeds, damage will be minimal. This is not always the case. A slow moving hurricane will produce more rainfall on average, and this can cause more damage from flooding. Flooding can last for weeks and can cause buildings that are left standing from a hurricane further damage.

Hurricanes Are Named in Alphabetical Order

Hurricanes are routinely given names. From 1950-1952, these names were simply the phonetic alphabet. In 1952, the US Weather Bureau switched to using female names. Today, the World Meteorological Organization is in charge of the names. There are six different name lists containing both male and female names. The list changes every year and if a hurricane becomes well-known and causes severe damage, the name is retired and replaced.

If You Can’t Evacuate, You Must Prepare

Hurricanes can cause significant damage and can kill. If you are unable to leave the area when there is a warning for a hurricane, board up any windows that could be broken by the high winds. Make sure to leave a way out in case your home floods. Stock up on food and water and remain inside. Be aware that tornadoes can occur, during hurricanes and wait until the local weather service has announced the threat is over before leaving your home.

Hurricane Katrina Was Not the Deadliest Hurricane in the US

On September 8 1900, a hurricane hit the Texas coast. It was classified as a Category 4 storm. It created a storm surge that was as high as 15 feet. Storm surges are flooding, and are often the most common cause of death during a hurricane. Estimates say that between 8,000 and 12,000 perished from the Texas storm. Hurricane Katrina killed 1,500. Hurricane Katrina was the costliest hurricane, causing 108 billion dollars’ worth of damage. The deadliest hurricane in recorded history occurred in 1970 in Bangladesh and killed between 150,000 and 300,000 people.

Hurricane Season Is Different in Each Ocean

The Indian Ocean experiences hurricane season from April 1-December 31 in the northern section, while the southern part of the ocean is more likely to see a storm from October 15 – May 31. The Pacific Ocean is broken down into three sections. The eastern part’s season is from May 15 – November 30, while the western part’s season is from July 1 – November 30. The southern part of the Pacific is more likely to see a hurricane from October 15 – May 15.

Hurricanes Are Becoming More Costly

While meteorologists argue over the reasons behind this fact, hurricanes are becoming more severe. Out of the 10 most costly hurricanes of all time, five of them have occurred since 1990. Over the past 200 years, nearly 2 million have been killed by hurricanes. Hurricanes kill more people than any other type of storm.

A Tropical Storm Is Different From a Hurricane

While both are large tropical storms, the main difference between them is the speed. Other differences include that tropical storms have low pressure areas, while hurricanes are more intense. Tropical storms also do not have an eye. Hurricane facts teach us that a hurricane’s eye is the area in the middle of the storm that lacks rain and wind.

Other Planets Have Hurricanes

The planet Jupiter has been experiencing a hurricane for over 300 years. It can be seen when looking at the planet through a high power telescope and appears as a red spot. The hurricane is bigger than the entire planet Earth.

Hurricanes Can’t Form at the Equator

The water temperature and winds at the equator are ideal for hurricanes, but a hurricane also needs Coriolis Force, which is a force that is found around a rotating object. This force is very weak at the equator and, for that reason, hurricanes don’t form.

Hurricanes Are Necessary

Hurricanes do a lot for the environment. By taking hot air from the tropics and moving it towards colder regions, temperatures and moisture around the Earth stay balanced. If hurricanes stopped, many areas on the planet would become too warm for animals and humans to live there.

Tornadoes Can Be Spawned From a Hurricane

Tornadoes can occur during, and even in the days after, a hurricane. Hurricane Andrew produced over 60 tornadoes. Tornadoes have higher wind speeds than hurricanes, but do not last as long and are much smaller. A hurricane lasts for days after hitting land and is, on average, 2,000 times larger than a tornado.

There Are Just a Handful of Hurricanes Each Year

While other storms are fairly common, luckily hurricanes are not. Every year, an average of 10 tropical storms form over the oceans. Only six will become hurricanes, and not all of them will hit land before dissipating.

Hurricane Facts – Facts about Hurricanes Summary

hurricane-factsHurricane facts teach us how, where and why these storms form. They also explain to us how dangerous these storms can be, and how much damage they can cause. We learn that hurricanes are becoming more frequent and more costly, but also that following advice can help people survive these violent storms.

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