Hurricane season has begun, and it is important to know the different words and phrases associated with them.

First, it is important to note that a hurricane doesn’t just happen and that there are stages that lead up to a hurricane. Tropical depressions emerge when an area with low air pressure is surrounded by thunderstorms that generate a circular wind flow with sustained wind speeds below 39 miles per hour. When wind speeds increase above 39 mph, but do not go over 73 mph, and the cyclonic circulation is more organized (in a way in which a storm is rotating and moving), the tropical depression is then classified as a tropical storm. These storms start around the Earth’s oceans and move around causing damage to cities everywhere.

A hurricane, on the other hand, is a tropical storm that has reached wind speeds of 74 mph or higher. As the hurricane consumes warm, moist tropical air from the level surface, it releases cool air into the air. It is continuously breathing in and out until it’s breathing is stopped. This usually occurs when the storm hits inland. The hurricane then loses power and momentum by releasing its wind speeds upon the areas of land that it is touching.

Sources:

https://www.nasa.gov/audience/forstudents/k-4/stories/nasa-knows/what-are-hurricanes-k4.html

http://www.weatherwizkids.com/weather-hurricane.htm

http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/aboutgloss.shtml#TROPCYC

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