The basic definition of a hurricane is that it is one giant storm. The size of it alone can cover whole small countries. Hurricanes can get to be as big as 600 miles at its’ widest point, and the power it produces is measured by categories. Those categories are measured by the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.
- Category 1: In this category, winds measure from 74 to the strongest at 95 miles per hour. Only minor damage is typically done by storms in this category.
- Category 2: The range of the winds for this category are from 96 to not more than 110 miles per hour. This may cause minor injuries and windows and roofing may suffer from damage.
- Category 3: The wind in this category ranges from 111 to 130 miles per hour. This category can do bigger damage to homes, humans, and animals. In addition to wind damage, flooding may breach shorelines. Power outages are common, too, with wind strengths under this category.
- Category 4: Under this category, winds reach up to 155 miles per hour to as low as 131 miles per hour, and structural damage is likely; residential and industrial. Residents of the affected area should be prepared with food storage and water for several days.
- Category 5: Winds starting at 155 miles per hour that can even surpass the 200 miles per hour mark can cause unimaginable damage to people, animals, and property. The best thing to do is to evacuate from the affected area ahead of time. Trees can be uprooted and homes completely destroyed. Days -even weeks- can go without power, food and water.