Unless you’ve hunkered down while 125 mph winds toy with ripping the roof of your house or spent weeks without electricity after the storm finally passed, it’s difficult to understand exactly what weathering a major hurricane looks and feels like.
Wind strength is only one defining characteristic – albeit a primary one – of storms coastal residents are taught from birth to monitor, respect and even evade once they reach a certain intensity level.
During a hurricane you usually hear meteorologists refer to its intensity by categories. If you don’t know the difference between a category 1 and a category 5 hurricane, The Weather Channel meteorologist Mark Elliot breaks it down for you.
When a system has sustained winds of 39 mph, it is classified as a tropical depression. When the winds reach 39 mph or higher, the depression becomes a tropical storm and is given a name.At 74 mph, the system is a hurricane.Wind Scale categorizes hurricanes by wind strength.The tropical system is assigned a category depending on its wind speed.