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Hurricanes, Typhoons, and Cyclones… oh my! Hurricane season, lasting from the beginning of June until the end of November, can be a stressful time for anyone living in an area commonly affected by storms. The Southeastern United States is typically affected by strong, devastating storms each year.
What Makes a Hurricane?
So what exactly is a hurricane? They’re actually known by a few other names depending on where you are, like typhoons or cyclones. Scientifically, the storms are labeled tropical cyclones. You’ll only hear the term Hurricane if you’re talking about a tropical cyclone formed in the Atlantic or eastern Pacific Oceans.
So, let’s break it down. These storms form in the warmer, moist parts of the climate found closer to the equator. Think of them as huge engines fueled by heat and humidity. Warm air rises, and as the warm air in these environments rises, it creates low-pressure systems closer to the water. As the moisture in the air begins to cool off, clouds form and keep on moving throughout the system, spinning along with the wind and being continuously fed by the heat and moisture found in the ocean. This whole system continues and begins to gain speed and structure until an eye eventually forms in the center of the storm.
A hurricane doesn’t just pop up out of nowhere. When a storm reaches wind speeds of 39 MPH or more, it officially becomes a Tropical Storm. A hurricane begins at wind speeds of 74 MPH and goes through an entire category system as it gains strength and speed:
Category 1: Wind speeds between 74 MPH and 95 MPH
Category 2: Wind speeds between 96 MPH and 110 MPH
Category 3: Wind speeds between 111 MPH and 129 MPH
Category 4: Wind speeds between 130 MPH and 156 PMH
Category 5: Wind speeds between 157 MPH and faster
Preparing for Hurricanes
If you’re in the projected path of a hurricane, the smartest thing you can do is prepare. Pay attention to the news and updates on the storm, and make sure to follow evacuation notices if you live in a declared evacuation zone. Staying in your home may be your first instinct, but if you live in a zone and don’t leave, you may be putting your life at risk.
Besides following official orders for evacuation and being vigilant, you should prepare by stocking up on bottled water, nonperishable food items, toiletries, and anything you think you may need in an emergency. Having all of your important documents (birth certificates, passports, etc) in a single place is a wise choice as well in case you do end up having to evacuate. Knowing where everything is and having it ready to go will help you to stay calm and deal with less stress during it all.
Another option to consider is installing hurricane resistant windows and doors on your home. It’s an investment, but it’s definitely one that pays off. Not only will it help to provide safety and structure to your home, but it can actually increase your home’s value if the time ever comes to sell it and move on.
Prepare the Right Way with MaxGuard Hurricane Windows and Doors
Hurricane season can bring about a few close-calls, scary storms, and last minute road trips out of evacuation zones. If you’re able to stay at home, prepare the right way and invest in Hurricane proof windows and doors. Bring your home up-to-date with modern safety technology and worry less during the next hurricane season. Contact us online today or give us a call at (561) 276-7100.