- A hurricane is an intense tropical storm with powerful winds and rain.
Other names for a hurricane include cyclone, typhoon and tropical storm.
While they are essentially the same thing, the different names usually indicate where the storm took place. Tropical storms that form in the Atlantic or Northeast Pacific (near the United States) are called hurricanes, those that form near in the Northwest Pacific (near Japan) are called typhoons and those that form in the South Pacific or Indian oceans are called cyclones.
Hurricanes usually form in tropical areas of the world.
Hurricanes develop over warm water and use it as an energy source.
Hurricanes lose strength as they move over land.
Coastal regions are most at danger from hurricanes.
As well as violent winds and heavy rain, hurricanes can also create tornadoes, high waves and widespread flooding.
Hurricanes are regions of low atmospheric pressure (also known as a depression).
The wind flow of hurricanes in the southern hemisphere is clockwise while the wind flow of hurricanes in the northern hemisphere is counterclockwise.
Weather in the eye of a hurricane is usually calm.
The eye of a hurricane can be anywhere from 2 miles (3.2 kilometers) in diameter to over 200 miles (320 kilometers) but they are usually around 30 miles (48 kilometers).
The winds around the eye of a hurricane are usually the strongest.
Hurricanes can be tracked by weather satellites and weather radar closer to land.
Hurricanes have led to the death of around 2 million people over the last 200 years.
The 1970 Bhola Cyclone that struck Bangladesh killed over 300000 people.
In 2005 Hurricane Katrina killed over 1800 people in the United States and caused around $80 billion dollars worth of property damage. The city of New Orleans was hit particularly hard with levee breaches leading to around 80% of the city being flooded.