Friday, December 5, 2008


Hurricane Gustav has raged with speed of 140 miles per hour. It is followed by Hanna, Ike and Josephine. You will find an explanation below of how hurricanes are named and categorised. PPR

************************** Currently, there are six separate 21-name lists and each of them is used every six years in a rotation. They don't include names that begin with Q,U,X,Y and Z because there aren't enough names starting with those letters. There has been 21 tropical storms and hurricanes in the Atlantic. A storm name is retired if it causes widespread damage and deaths. So if there is a deadly hurricane Alpha, what is it replaced with when it's retired? Actually, when old names are retired, new names have to be drafted in to a database maintained specifically for Atlantic ocean storms, said Mark Oliver, spokesman for the world meteorological organization in Geneva, Switzerland, which maintains the database. "There are certain specifications which they have to meet," Oliver said. "they have to be fairly easily remembered, they've got to be in alphabetical order." For several hundred years, damaging hurricanes were named after the Saint's Day when the storm hit. For example, there was Hurricane Santa Ana which hit Puerto Rico on July 26, 1825. According to the U.S. conference of catholic bishops, there are Saint's days for about a third to a half of all days. Then, Australian meteorologist Clement Wragge began giving women's names to tropical storms before the end of the 19th century, according to the National Weather Service. Other regions take a different approach. In Asia, storms may be given names of people, but also of flowers or other non-human beings, Oliver said. Japan does not participate in this system, preferring instead to number each storm chronologically starting a new each year. During World War I I, storm naming became more common, especially among Air Force and Navy meteorologists who tracked storms over the Pacific Ocean. From 1950 to 1952, the United States named storms by a phonetic alphabet, starting with Able, Baker and Charlie. That became confusing because the same names were used each year, so female names were used starting in 1953 in a list created by the National Hurricane Center. The first one was called tropical storm Alice. That was considered biased against women, so men's names were added in 1978 in the Pacific and a year later in the Atlantic, with Hurricane Bob.

There have been six lists of names in use since 1979 (list i). The lists make use of names from both sexes. They are in alphabetical order and lists are recycled after six years, with list vi in use for the 2008 season,
Gender alternates both between adjacent names in a list (a male name is followed by a female one and vice versa) and between initial names between lists (if one year's list starts with a female name, the next year's list begins with a male one and vice versa).
If the names on a list are all used, storms are then named after the letters of the Greek alphabet (alpha, beta, gamma, etc.) Greek names, unlike the names in the regular lists, cannot be retired. In case a storm reached the magnitude that might otherwise have lead to retirement, the storm would be listed with the retired names with a footnote indicating the Greek letter would still be available for future storms. The use of 21 names was established in reference to the1933 Atlantic hurricane season which had been the record holder for the most storms in the region. This record was broken during the 2005 season which saw 28 storms (27 named Andone unnamed), and saw the first use of the Greek alphabet to name storms.
List 1 List 2 List 3 List 4 List 5 List 6
• Ana• Bill• Claudette• Danny• Erika• Fred• Grace• Henri• Ida• Joaquin• Kate• Larry• Mindy• Nicholas• Odette• Peter• Rose• Sam• Teresa• Victor• Wanda

• Alex• Bonnie• Colin• Danielle• Earl• Fiona• Gaston• Hermine• Igor• Julia• Karl• Lisa• Matthew• Nicole• Otto• Paula• Richard• Shary• Tomas• Virginie• Walter

• Arlene• Bret• Cindy• Don• Emily• Franklin• Gert• Harvey• Irene• Jose• Katrina• Lee• Maria• Nate• Ophelia• Philippe• Rina• Sean• Tammy• Vince• Whitney

• Alberto• Beryl• Chris• Debby• Ernesto• Florence• Gordon• Helene• Isaac• Joyce• Kirk• Leslie• Michael• Nadine• Oscar• Patty• Rafael• Sandy• Tony• Valerie• William

• Andrea• Barry• Chantal• Dorian• Erin• Fernand• Gabrielle• Humberto• Ingrid• Jerry• Karen• Lorenzo• Melissa• Nestor• Olga• Pablo• Rebekah• Sebastian• Tanya• Van• Wendy

• Arthur• Bertha• Cristobal• Dolly• Edouard• Fay• Gustav• Hanna• Ike• Josephine• Kyle• Laura• Marco• Nana• Omar• Paloma• Rene• Sally• Teddy• Vicky• Wilfred

Categories for hurricanes

Have you ever wondered what exactly the forecasters mean when they say a hurricane is a category 1 or category 4? Hurricanes are classifed based on categories of intensity. These categories tell people what kind of damage the storm could cause. A tropical storm officially becomes a hurricane once it reaches winds of 75mph or greater. Once this happens the hurricane is then given a category based on how powerful the winds are. The category also gives an idea as to how likely the damage will be for flooding and structural damage once the hurricane hits land. Hurricanes are measured on the "saffir-simpson" scale. The scale was named after the two men that came up with this way to measure hurricanes. Herbert Saffir was an engineer in Florida and Robert Simpson was the Director of the National Hurricane Center from 1967 through 1973.

The scale has five categories which are: Category 1
A category one hurricane has winds ranging in speed from 75 to 95 mph. A category 1 hurricane usually causes some minor flooding and damage to trees and some structural damage to buildings. Some category 1 hurricanes were: hurricane allison 1995, hurricane danny 1997, hurricane lili in 2002, hurricane gaston in 2004. Category 2
Category 2 storms have winds 96 to 110 mph. A category 2 hurricane will cause some structural damage usually ripping tiles off roofs, damaging windows and causing tree damage and possibly knocking down power lines. Mobile homes also will usually see a great deal of damage done to the home. Minor flooding can be expected with a category 2 storm. Some category 2 hurricanes were: hurricane Kate in 1985, hurricane Bob in 1991, hurricane Bertha in 1996, hurricane Isabel in 2003, hurricane Frances in 2004. Category 3
Any hurricane that is a category 3 or higher is considered a major hurricane. A category 3 hurricane is a hurricane in which you should evacuate from your area and move to an area away from the hurricane. Category 3 hurricanes have winds of 111 to 130 mph. Category 3 hurricanes can cause tree damage, building damage and mobile homes could be destroyed. Some category 3 hurricanes were: hurricane Alicia in 1983, hurricane Roxanne in 1995, Fran in 1996, hurricane Jeanne and hurricane Ivan in 2004.

Category 4
Category 4 hurricanes are powerful with winds of 131 to 155 mph. Category 4 hurricanes can cause damage to all types of buildings. Tree and sign damage can also be expected. Mobile homes will be destroyed. Flooding is usually severe with a category 4 storm. Some category 4 hurricanes were: hurricane Felix and hurricane Opal both in 1995 hurricane Hugo in 1989 and hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Category 5
Category 5 storms are the most powerful hurricanes on the earth. We are lucky that these hurricanes are rare and we have only had three category 5 hurricanes ever hit the United states. Category 5 storms have winds of 156 mph and over. Category 5 storms will cause heavy structural damage to most buildings and mobile homes will be destroyed. Trees and signs will be blown down. Category 5 hurricanes will also cause severe flooding with storm surges at 18 feet or higher. The only 3 category 5 hurricanes to ever make landfall in the United States since the record keeping began are: Labor day hurricane of 1935 that hit the Florida Keys, hurricane Camile in 1969, and hurricane Andrew in 1992.

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