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What A Different Storm Category Means, How Wind Speed Factors In!

After a fairly quiet start, the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season is fully underway with Hurricane Ian approaching the United States.

The storm is expected to reach Florida’s west coast or roughly by noon Thursday, according to the Guardian. National Hurricane Central.

Hurricane Ian is expected to become a Category 3 hurricane on Monday night and is expected to become a Category 4 hurricane. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency, citing storm conditions “expected to represent a major disaster.”

How extreme are a Category 3 or 4 hurricane? What does a completely different class mean to people in the storm’s path?

The National Climate Service uses the Saffir-Simpson Scale, which measures only the sustained wind speeds of hurricanes using a 1 to 5 scale system. The scale gives estimates of potential property damage based on the NWS.

Category 1 hurricane

Consistent with the NWS, Category 1 hurricanes have winds of 74-95 mph.

The NWS mentions on its website that its “very harmful winds” will cause some damage to the roof, wood paneling, vinyl siding and gutters.

“The branches of giant shrubs can snap off, and shrubs with shallow roots may be drawn down,” the NWS said. “Extreme damage to energy strains and utility poles can lead to power outages lasting anywhere from a few days to a few days.”

Hurricane Daniel appears in this computer image from NOAA satellite television.


Hurricane Daniel is a Category 1 storm this season.

Category 2 hurricane

Category 2 hurricanes have winds between 96-110 mph. According to the NWS, “harmful high winds” can cause significant roof and side damage to well-built properties.

“Many shallow-rooted shrubs may be minimised or uprooted, and many roads blocked. A near-total lack of energy is expected, with power outages ranging from days to weeks,” the NWS said.

Category 3-5 storms are considered major hurricanes.

Extra: What about hurricane types?

Category 3 hurricane

The Category 3 hurricane, with sustained winds of 111 to 129 mph, “will cause devastating damage,” the NWS said.

“Efficiently constructed framing properties can cause deep damage or removal of roof decks and gable ends. Many shrubs can be minimized or uprooted, blocking many roads. In the days to weeks after a storm has passed, electricity and Water will not appear,” the company said.

Homes on the Salinas waterfront flood after Hurricane Fiona passed in Salinas, Puerto Rico, Monday, September 19, 2022.

AP Photo/Alejandro Granadillo

Category 4 hurricane

A Category 4 storm could cause “catastrophic damage” with winds of 130-156 mph. A Category 4 storm can cause deep damage to well-built properties, while also damaging most exterior roofs and clapboards.

“Most shrubs will likely be minimized or uprooted and power will drop. Fallen shrubs and utility poles will isolate residential areas. Energy outages will last for weeks to months. Many spaces may be closed for weeks or months. Uninhabitable,” the NWS said in its statement. Category 4 storm site.

Category 5 hurricane

Category 5 hurricanes can be the most destructive hurricanes, with sustained winds of at least 157 mph.

“Excessive frame houses can be destroyed, with complete roof collapse and clapboard collapse. Fallen bushes and utility poles will isolate residential areas,” the NWS said. “Facility outages will last for weeks, if not months. Many spaces may be uninhabitable for weeks or months.”

The last Category 5 hurricane to hit the United States was Hurricane Michael, which reached Florida in 2018.

12272230 092722 cc ap hurricane michael img

Firefighter Austin Schrab conducts a house search on the Mexican waterfront in Florida, Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018, after Hurricane Michael.

AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

William Mansell and Karma Allen of ABC Information contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2022 ABC Information Web Ventures.


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