Hurricanes 101: The Basics

Now that you have arrived at the site, and hopefully gone through the formalities of getting started, let’s get underway with a basic understanding of what a hurricane is, where they occur, the stages of tropical development, how they develop, and what causes them to develop, and weaken.

Hurricanes, as they are called in much of the Western Hemisphere (they are called Typhoons in the Western Pacific, Cyclones in the Indian Ocean, and in Australia), are tropical storms that form where the trade winds come together, and strengthen to have sustained wind speeds of 65 knots, or 74 mph, and even higher depending on how strong they become.

When they mature, hurricanes have several key components such as an eye, eyewall, central dense overcast, and outflow. They bring such effects as heavy rains, high waves, and even tornadoes when they make landfall anywhere from the Caribbean Islands to the Canadian Maritimes.

Hurricanes usually occur during the summer and fall months of the year. As a matter of fact, the Atlantic Hurricane Season lasts from June 1st to November 30th each year. However, there have been instances where tropical storms and hurricanes have formed in May and December.