Hurricane one of the most feared natural events, are the result of a combination of a number of atmospheric and geographical factors. Whenever a region is hit by a phenomenon like this, the effects are quickly felt, with the devastation of houses, natural areas and, in some cases, the record of several deaths.
What is a hurricane?
A hurricane is a circular air movement system, at a speed greater than 105 km / h and with a diameter of hundreds of kilometers, resulting from the formation of a low pressure system over oceanic regions.
Some characteristics of hurricanes are:
- Hurricanes are climatic phenomena;
- Hurricanes are responsible for transporting heat to higher latitude regions;
- They are rated on a scale of 1 to 5 (Saffir-Simpson). The higher, the stronger the winds;
- If they gain a lot of strength, they can turn into natural disasters. There are cases of winds that exceed 200 km / h.
- Some weather stations monitor hurricane movements and warn the population if there is evidence of a disaster.
What is the difference between hurricane, tornado and cyclone?
When these air movements are formed in the Atlantic Ocean, they are called hurricanes . But when formed in the Pacific Ocean, they are called typhoons . Both are subdivisions of cyclones .
That is, cyclones are environmental and natural events, which rely on air displacement in circular movements. These episodes usually cause strong winds, with speeds of up to 200 km / h. Depending on where it was formed, a cyclone can be a hurricane or a typhoon.
The tornadoes are also air displacements. However, they are smaller than cyclones, even though they present higher speeds, reaching up to 500 km / h. Even the disasters caused by tornadoes are usually greater.
The biggest hurricanes in the world
The biggest hurricanes that have ever appeared in the Atlantic Ocean were:
- Hurricane Katrina (United States, 2005);
- Hurricane Andrew (United States, 1992);
- Hurricane Camile (United States, 1969);
- Hurricane Carla (United States, 1961);
- Hurricane Mitch (Central America, 1998);
- Hurricane Rita (United States, 2005)
- Hurricane Florida Keys (United States, 1935);
- Hurricane Irma (Puerto Rico and the United States, 2017);
- Hurricane Wilma (Mexico and Cuba, 2005).
Types Of Hurricanes
Hurricanes are classified into three main groups: tropical depressions (or tropical cyclones), tropical storms, and hurricanes.
A tropical depression is an organized system of storms with a defined surface circulation, supporting winds of less than 62 km / h. It has no eyes, and it does not have the spiral shape of typically powerful storms.
A tropical storm is an organized system of strong storms with a defined surface circulation, sustaining winds between 63 and 117 km / h. At this point, the distinctive cyclonic shape begins to develop, however the eye is not normally present.
Above 118 km / h, the tropical storm turns into a hurricane, and the eye is clearly visible.
Hurricanes are categorized on a scale of 1 to 5, called the Saffir-Simpson Scale, which considers the pressure measured in the eye, the speed of the winds and the volume of storms. This scale can measure the destructive power of a hurricane.
Level 1 hurricanes have winds with speeds between 118 km / h and 153 km / h and cause little structural damage.
Level 2 hurricanes have winds between 154 km / h and 176 km / h and cause damage to trees and roofs.
Level 3 hurricanes have winds between 177 km / h and 208 km / h, causing flooding and damage to homes.
Level 4 hurricanes have winds between 209km / h and 246km / h and cause roof destruction and major structural damage to homes.
The most devastating hurricanes are those of level 5, which have winds above 247 km / h, cause severe floods and major structural damage in houses and buildings.
The areas with the highest incidence of hurricanes are: Western North and Eastern Pacific Ocean and Western South, North Indian Ocean, Southeast and Southwest, and the North Atlantic Basin (Gulf of Mexico region).