Video:All About Hurricaneswith Matt Rosenberg
Learn all about hurricanes and what they are by definition.See Transcript
Transcript:All About HurricanesNamed for Huracan, the Carib god of evil, the hurricane is an amazing yet destructive natural phenomenon that occurs about 40 to 50 times worldwide each year.
Information About HurricanesHurricane season takes place in the Atlantic, Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and Central Pacific from June 1 to November 30 while in the Eastern Pacific the season is from May 15 to November 30. Due to the Coriolis effect, the regions between 5° and 20° north and south of the equator are the belts where hurricanes can form. The term cyclone is used in the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea and the term typhoon is used in the Pacific Ocean north of the equator and west of the International Dateline.
All About HurricanesThe birth of a hurricane starts as a low pressure zone and builds into a tropical wave of low pressure. In addition to a disturbance in the tropical ocean water, the storms that become hurricanes also require warm ocean waters (above 80°F or 27°C down to 150 feet or 50 meters below sea level) and light upper level winds. There are approximately 80-100 tropical storms annually and about half of these storms become full-fledged hurricanes. It is at 74 mph or 119 km/hr that a tropical storm becomes a hurricane. Hurricanes can be from 60 to almost 1000 miles wide. They vary widely in intensity; their strength is measured on the Saffir-Simpson scale from a weak category 1 storm to a catastrophic category 5 storm.
Additional Facts About HurricanesHurricane damage results from three primary causes:
- 1) Storm Surge, which is the dome of water created by the low pressure center of a hurricane. This storm surge quickly floods low-lying coastal areas with anywhere from 3 feet for a category one storm to over 19 feet of storm surge for a category five storm.
- 2) Wind Damage. The strong, at least 74 mph or 119 km/hr, winds of a hurricane can cause widespread destruction far inland of coastal areas, destroying homes, buildings, and infrastructure.
- 3) Freshwater Flooding. Hurricanes are huge tropical storms and dump many inches of rain over a widespread area in a short period of time. This water can engorge rivers and streams, causing hurricane-induced flooding.
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