Friday, May 31, 2013

Hurricanes 101

What is a Hurricane? 

How are they formed? 

Where do they come from? 

Why are Hurricanes considered one of the strongest forces on earth?


Now is the time to know? Tomorrow is June 1, 2013, the official beginning of the Atlantic hurricane season !

These are just a few of the questions that people think about when they think of severe tropical weather. Below is a video called 'Hurricane 101' which appeared on 'National Geographic'. Also included with this video is the transcript listed on a 'per second' basis, so you can actually go out to the video, find a specific moment of it and read along with the video. Associating a story along with the video helps observers learn abit easier on this topic of Hurricanes. This is mother nature in its grandest fury, but what are hurricanes truly all about?



0:01 Violent winds, Driving rain, Killer waves.
0:07 These are the hallmarks of a hurricane
0:09 also called cyclones or typhoons.
0:12 Hurricanes are giant storms prowling the world's tropical seas.
0:17 An average hurricane releases as much energy in a day
0:20 as many as half a million small atomic bombs.
0:25 Hurricanes form in the summer and fall when the sun heats vast     stretches of
0:29 tropical ocean
0:31 to over eighty two degrees.
0:33 Warm, moist air rises over these hot spots creating thunderstorms.
0:39 Upper-level winds and surface winds then come together forming a circular pattern
0:44 of clouds known as a tropical depression.
0:48 When the winds exceed thirty nine miles per hour,a tropical storm has developed.
0:53 When the winds reach seventy four miles per hour, a hurricane is
0:57 officially born.
0:59 Inside the storm, bands of rain up to three hundred miles long meet in the
1:04 eyewall, the most violent section. Here, winds of up to two hundred miles per
1:09 hour spiral upward
1:11 within the center of the hurricane. Down drafts of dry air are
1:16 created in a strangely calm area called the eye.
1:20 A fully formed a hurricane may stretch over five hundred miles in diameter.
1:25 That's a storm nearly the size of Texas and
1:28 reach a height of nine miles.
1:32 Most of these storms spin out over the open sea
1:35 but in an average year, two or three will strike the mainland of North America
1:40 and when they do, the damage can be catastrophic.
1:44 Most dangerous is the storm surge,
1:46 a wall of water that's meets across the coastline where a hurricane makes landfall.
1:53 About forty five thousand people were killed by hurricanes in the twentieth
1:57 century,
1:58 including some fifteen thousand in the United States.
2:03 Hurricanes are also costly in dollars.
2:05 Nineteen-ninety two's Hurricane Andrew
2:08 was the most expensive natural disaster in U.S. history, causing more than twenty
2:13 five
2:13 billion dollars worth of damage.
2:17 Scientists are searching for better ways to predict the path of a hurricane.
2:22 Special planes called hurricane hunters
2:25 fly directly into these monster storms and drop sensors to measure wind speed,
2:30 temperature an air pressure,
2:32 providing vital clues into the hurricanes direction.
2:38 Viewing 3D models also helping scientists understand this awesome force
2:42 of nature,
2:44 and provide a quicker and more accurate warning to
2:47 anyone unlucky enough to be caught in its path.

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