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Hurricane Facts and Analysis

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A hurricane is a big storm that forms over the warm ocean waters. It usually starts as storms in the Caribbean or off the west coast of Africa. Warm, moist air moves toward the center of the storm and spirals upward. This releases torrential rains. As updrafts suck up more water vapor, it triggers a cycle of strengthening that can be stopped only when contact is made with land or cooler water.
 
Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale:
  • Category 1 - 74-95 mph winds with 4-5 ft. storm surge and minimal damage
  • Category 2 - 96-110 mph winds with 6-8 ft. storm surge and moderate damage
  • Category 3 - 111-130 mph winds with 9-12 ft. storm surge and major damage
  • Category 4 - 131-155 mph winds with 13-18 ft. storm surge and severe damage
  • Category 5 - 155+ mph winds with 18+ ft. storm surge and catastropic damage

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