How Big Can Hurricanes Get?

How Big Can Hurricanes Get?
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    In the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, the east coast of the united states is devastated.
    At least 36 people were killed by the hurricane.
    Rivers continue to rise in south caroline and will continue for the rest of the week.
    At the time of this recording, residents are still not allowed to return to their homes.
    And the scary thing is, Hurricane Florence was a category 1 hurricane, the scale goes
    up to 5.
    It was categorized to the least severe.
    It makes you wonder, how big can hurricanes actually get?
    Hello and welcome back to Life's Biggest Questions, the channel that asks the fundamental
    questions of life.
    The question we are asking today is, how big can hurricanes get.
    I'm your host, = Charlotte Dobre.
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    Hurricanes are massive storms that can cover up to 600 miles across.
    Hurricane winds are extremely strong, and they spiral inward toward the center of the
    storm.
    Hurricanes can last more than a week, moving at a slow speed of only 10 to 20 miles per
    hour.
    There's a reason why most hurricanes occur in the fall.
    They start over warmer waters of 80 degrees farenheit or more.
    As you go further up into the air, the surrounding air gets cooler.
    When winds blow in the same direction with the same speed, it forces the air upward.
    The wind from hurricanes is actually kinetic energy, that's dissipated due to surface
    friction.
    The Saffir Simpson hurricane scale says that the biggest hurricanes are a category 5, there
    is no category 6, even if the hurricane is far more powerful than another hurricane classified
    as a category 5 storm.
    Once a storm reaches category 5, all you need to know is, its really really bad.
    So bad that it can cause irreversible damage to trees, building and electricity supplies.
    Hurricanes are categorized by wind and pressure--The higher the wind speed and the lower the pressure,
    the more powerful the hurricane.
    Wind is usually the determining factor when classifying hurricanes.
    The scale begins with category 1 hurricanes, where winds range from 74 to 95 miles per
    hour or 119 kilomters per hour to 153 kilometers per hour.
    Category 3 storms have winds of 178 to 208 kilometers per hour.
    Category 3 hurricanes and up are considered to be the most severe.
    In comparison a category 5 storm has winds of 156 miles per hour or anything stronger
    than that.
    Category 5 storms are known to cause catastrophic damage, and the area that they hit will be
    uninhabitable for anywhere from weeks to months.
    Category 5 storms can cause the frames of homes to be destroyed, roof failure and wall
    collapse.
    Power outages could last for months.
    And lets not forget about storm surges, arguably the most dangerous aspect of hurricanes: Storm
    surges.
    A storm surge is the name attributed to the rising water of low pressure weather systems
    like hurricanes.
    Most of the casualties that happen during a hurricane are a result of storm surges.
    So what was the most powerful hurricane?
    Easy, that's miss Irma of 2017.
    Hurricane Irma was one of the most powerful storms on record for the atlantic basin.
    Irma was a category 5 storm, peak winds hit 185 miles per hour or 298 kilometers per hour.
    Irma was the most powerful atlantic hurricane ever recorded, and some people believed that
    it should have been classified as a category 6 hurricane.
    If there were a category 6, the winds would be as fast as 196 miles per hour.
    There has already been a hurricane that was stronger than most category 5 storms.
    Typhoon nancy in the northwest pacific ocean apparently had maximum sustained winds of
    215 miles per hour or 346 kilometers per hour.
    I bet you're hearing that and thinking, but lifes biggest questions, a typhoon is
    not a hurricane if its in a different part of the world.
    Shush you.
    A typhoon is the same thing as a hurricane, its just in a different area of the globe.
    Experts say that theres no need for a category 6 storm for the reason that once you hit catastrophic
    damage, it cant get any worse.
    Or can it?
    Whats a word for worse than catastrophic?
    Cataclysmic?
    Yeah, I like that, cataclysmic.
    A category 6 storm would be cataclysmic.
    So how big could a hurricane get?
    Well there might not actually be a limit.
    Hurricanes gain strength through warm water.
    Warm water is the gasoline that feeds the speed.
    The scary thing is, we know that the world is warming substantially every year.
    A warmer earth means warmer water, and warmer water means more intense hurricanes.
    Some scientists predict that hurricanes will become stronger in the future, and the strongest
    storms will become even more intense thanks to warmer temperatures.
    According to predictions by the NOAA, hurricane intensity will increase on average by 2 to
    11 percent by the end of the 21st century.
    For every 1 degree of temperature increase, the speed of the winds will increase by 5
    percent.
    As long as the oceans are warming, there is no limit on the wind strength of a hurricane.
    What does this mean for the future?
    Devastating, deadly floods and damage to infrastructure.
    It might mean that residents of states like florida and the Carolinas will have to move
    inland to avoid being hit by hurricanes.
    At a certain point, powerful hurricanes might make areas of the globe uninhabitable.
    I'm charlotte dobre and you've been watching life's biggest questions, if you enjoyed
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