If you live in the United States, spring has sprung, and summer is well on its way. And if you live on the east coast of the United States, that means hurricane season is almost here. Typically recognized as running from June 1 - November 30 in the United States, the peak of Atlantic hurricane season is usually around September 10th of each year.
Approximately 10 storms develop into "named storms" each year - these storms are seen as being significant enough to merit naming by the NOAA. Of these storms, around 6 become hurricanes each year, and around 2.5 become “major” hurricanes of category 3 or greater. Most of these hurricanes are relatively harmless and end up dispersing before doing significant damage.
But every once in awhile, weather conditions are perfect for creating devastating storms that swell in size, intensity, and speed. These storms represent a serious danger to both people and property, and usually require emergency evacuation procedures.
In order to give you an idea of the size, intensity, and damage caused by these storms, we'll take a look at the top 11 most powerful Atlantic hurricanes of all time, and how they have affected the United States over the years.
NOTE: As per NOAA guidelines, these storms have been arranged by pressure - from lowest to highest. While storms are often ranked by wind speed alone, the NOAA prefers to rank storms by pressure.
11. Hurricane Ivan (2004)
Hurricane Ivan was the ninth named storm and the sixth hurricane to occur during the relatively active 2004 hurricane season. The storm system began forming in early September, around the peak of oceanic activity for the 2004 Atlantic hurricane season.
Hurricane Ivan began to form September 2, 2004, southwest of Cape Verde. The system began moving west, and began to strengthen gradually. It became classified as a tropical storm by September 3, 2004, and by September 5, it had reached hurricane status.
By September 9, winds in the hurricane had intensified to 160 mph, as it passed around Jamaica and headed westward towards the United States. Peak strength was reached on September 12, 2004, when the hurricane passed through the Yucatán Channel.
The storm then began to weaken slightly to category 4 strength before making landfall on the Gulf Coast of the United States. In Louisiana and Mississippi, thousands of Americans were evacuated. In Florida, thousands of homes were destroyed, and multiple bridges were heavily damaged by the high winds of Hurricane Ivan.
According to the NOAA, Hurricane Ivan is the 6th costliest hurricane to make landfall in the United States, with damages at $22.8 billion, adjusted for inflation.
10. Hurricane "Cuba" (1924)
Measured before the NOAA began naming storms, Hurricane Cuba is the earliest hurricane to be classified as a category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson scale, and its low pressure of 910 hPa places it at tenth on our list of the most intense Atlantic hurricanes.
This hurricane formed on October 141924 in the Caribbean, and began picking up steam as it moved in a northwesterly direction. By October 16, it had officially attained hurricane status.
By October 18, the hurricane had peaked at an intensity of 910 hPa, and sustained winds of over 165 mph. Almost immediately after the hurricane hit peak strength, it made contact with Cuba. To this day, it is the most powerful hurricane to have ever hit the country.
After moving past Cuba, the hurricane weakened quite a bit, reaching Florida with peak winds of around 90mph. Despite the catastrophic damage done to Cuba, Florida was relatively unaffected. There were no reported fatalities, though heavy rainfall occurred all throughout the state.[click to continue...]
School administrators have to deal with a lot. Teacher and staff issues, pushy parents, difficult children - it can be quite a challenge to deal with everything that's on your plate.
But the last thing you need is to be distracted or unable to react quickly to an emergency weather situation - your number one priority has to be keeping the children, staff, and faculty of your school safe and secure.
Emergency weather situations are often some of the most challenging situations that school administrators find themselves dealing with, so it's essential that you have a good idea of your duties and appropriate steps to take to keep your school safe when the worst happens.
In this article, we’ll take a look at some simple tips that you can use to help keep your school safe during an emergency weather situation. Whether it's a severe thunderstorm, a hurricane, or even a tornado these tips will help you keep your head on straight, and deal with any issues you encounter in a levelheaded, professional way. Read on, and learn with us.
1. Keep An Eye On The Emergency Weather Situation - And Be Proactive
The best way to deal with an emergency weather situation is to see it coming ahead of time. The longer you have to prepare, the longer you have to ensure the safety of students, faculty, family members, and other people who may be at your school. Minutes - even seconds - are crucial.
So keep an eye on the most up-to-date severe weather warning systems. The best system to use for up-to-date information is a NOAA Weather Radio. These devices allow you to connect directly to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and get up-to-the-second updates about the current situation near you. For a full list of location-specific AM frequencies, check the NOAA website.
When you are in danger, a "tone alert" will issue at 1050hz, which will be followed by warning information relevant to your location. These alerts include tropical storms/hurricanes, tornadoes, flash floods, severe thunderstorms, and other weather patterns.
Other options include cable television like The Weather Channel, local TV news stations with access to NOAA products, and Primary Emergency Alert System (EAS) radio stations. You can also check the weather online or with smartphone applications.
Regardless of how exactly you monitor the weather, ensure that you are up-to-date on potentially dangerous supercells, thunderstorms, and other weather systems that are near your location, so that you can respond, if necessary.
2. Get The Message Out To Students, Staff, And Faculty - ASAP!
The primary method by which emergency information will be relayed to your students is like the PA (Public Address) system. However, this may not always be available to you – for example, if you have already lost power in an emergency weather situation. Therefore, it is critical that you have a backup system such as a megaphone.[click to continue...]
The winds and rains produced in a hurricane have the potential to do massive destruction in just a few hours. Even though we typically have a couple days' notice on their impending arrival, the force can still take us by surprise. Cities, towns, college campuses, schools, homeowners, and anyone else living at risk of a hurricane need to have a decisive plan in place for dealing with this type of storm.
Hurricane Facts and Information
Your first step in preparing for hurricane season lies in knowing what you are dealing with. Forecasters may be talking about an approaching storm for days, but you won't be able to properly prepare yourself, school, or town unless you know what they are referring to.[click to continue...]
The only good thing about a blizzard is that you are usually given some notice that it is on its way. This should give you enough time to buy some cocoa, batten down the hatches and light a fire in the fireplace. Follow these tips, and you'll stay safe and warm while the snow is piling on:
1. Add Extra Insulation to Your Windows and Doors
A blizzard does not just bring snow. A blizzard blows freezing cold winds right up to the exterior of your home. If your home is not well insulated, that freezing cold air will make its way into your living space. Reinforce window and door frames by filling in cracks with caulking, or if the entire window is a problem secure a piece of plastic in front of it. Use old towels rolled up as an additional barrier for the space at the bottom of doors that lead outside.[click to continue...]
DialMyCalls.com offers automated weather alerts for its members to prepare for hurricane season 2013.
The 2013 Atlantic hurricane season will officially begin on June 1, 2013 and according to experts, it's going to be an "above average" season this year. Philip Klotzbach and William Gray, meteorologists at Colorado State University, predict 18 storms, nine of which will strengthen into hurricanes. (Source: ibtimes.com) [click to continue...]
Tropical Storm Debby formed in the Gulf of Mexico over the weekend and has been slamming Florida with tons of rain and extreme weather.
Amidst the massive amount of rainfall that Tropical Storm Debby is producing, the extreme force of nature is also creating deadly tornadoes. It is said that at least one person has died due to the tornadoes that were spawned by the slow moving storm off the coast of Florida. With sustained winds now at 50 mph, Debby could quite possibly move ashore near the panhandle of Florida. What are Tropical Storm Debby Text Message Alerts and how could they help your community?[click to continue...]
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