An integral piece of information that travelers to the Caribbean and southern United States should be aware of is which time of year hurricanes take place. You can’t exactly enjoy the sun while sitting on the beach during 100 mile per hour winds right? So make sure you prepare for your trip by becoming aware of a few general facts.
When is Hurricane Season?
The general guidelines listing hurricane season state that it lasts from June 1st to November 30th. This is just a broad range because the majority of hurricanes occur during late August and September. There tend to be between 3 and 10 hurricanes every year.
The Science Behind Hurricanes
The reason why hurricanes in the Atlantic ocean mainly occur at this time of year is a generally simple one. The ocean beneath the storm needs to be heated to a high enough temperature up to a certain depth in order to fuel the storm. In addition, the air above the warm water has to cool off quickly as it increases in altitude. This generally happens most often in September because the water has had the entire summer to heat up. Hurricanes have winds that reach speeds between 110 and 300 kilometers per hour.
Other Categories of Storms
A tropical storm is only considered a hurricane when the winds reach sustained speeds of over 110 kilometers per hour. Here are some other storm classifications:
Tropical Cyclone – The early stages of the formation of a hurricane. At this point the storm is forming into a cyclone and gaining momentum
Tropical Depression – Characterized as a storm cell with low pressure and winds less than 55 kilometers per hour
Tropical Storm – Sustained winds ranging from about 56 to 109 kilometers per hour.