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GS-III :
  • 30 August, 2019

  • Min Read

Hurricane Dorian

GS-I: Hurricane Dorian

News

Hurricane Dorian is to hit the east coast of Florida as a “major” hurricane, in Category 3 or possibly Category 4.

What do the categories mean?

  • Powerful winds are what define a hurricane, so they are named and classified based on how hard their winds are blowing.
  • To qualify as a hurricane, a storm must have sustained winds of 74 mph or more.
  • All hurricanes are dangerous, but some pack more punch than others.
  • So meteorologists try to quantify each storm’s destructive power by using the Saffir-Simpson scale placing it in one of five categories based on sustained wind speed.

Saffir-Simpson scale

Category 1, 74 to 95 mph: These storms’ winds may knock down some trees and power lines and do a bit of damage to buildings.

Category 2, 96 to 110 mph: These storms are likely to uproot many trees, disrupt electric power over wide areas and do significant roof and siding damage.

Category 3, 111 to 129 mph: These are major storms that can take roofs off even well-constructed houses and knock out electric and water systems for days or weeks. Roads will be blocked by falling trees and poles. Dorian is forecast to be at least this strong when it makes landfall.

Category 4, 130 to 156 mph: These major storms do catastrophic damage, felling most trees and power poles and wrecking some buildings. Affected areas may be uninhabitable for days or weeks afterward.

Category 5, 157 mph or more: Storms this powerful are rare, and when they strike, they are immensely destructive. Few structures will come through a direct hit unscathed, and a large percentage of frame buildings will be destroyed. Recovery may take weeks or months.

What is the difference between hurricane, a cyclone, and a typhoon?

  • The only difference between a hurricane, a cyclone, and a typhoon is the location where the storm occurs.
  • In the Atlantic and Northeast Pacific, the term “hurricane” is used.
  • The same type of disturbance in the Northwest Pacific is called a “typhoon” and “cyclones” occur in the South Pacific and the Indian Ocean.
  • A tropical cyclone is a generic term used by meteorologists to describe a rotating, organized system of clouds and thunderstorms that originates over tropical or subtropical waters and has closed, low-level circulation.

Source: The Hindu


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