Understanding Tropical Systems
The Panhandle of Florida is no stranger to tropical depressions, tropical storms, and hurricanes. The landfall of Hurricane Michael in our area in 2018 brought a great deal of property damage, both from rain and wind, and reminded us all how important it is to be both weather aware and prepared. With the likelihood of tropical systems affecting our community, it is important to understand the different categories of these storms. The National Hurricane Center defines each type of tropical system as follows:
- Tropical Depression: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 38 mph or less.
- Tropical Storm: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph.
- Hurricane: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 74 mph or higher.
Hurricanes are further ranked by intensity on what is known as the Sariff-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale:
- Category 1: 74-95 MPH sustained winds.
- Category 2: 96-110 MPH sustained winds.
- Category 3: 111-129 MPH sustained winds.
- Category 4: 130-156 MPH sustained winds.
- Category 5: 157 of higher MPH sustained winds.
With the increase in storm intensity, or category, comes the added probability of dangerous conditions and damage to your property. When a severe storm, tropical or otherwise, is forecasted in your area, the top priority is to follow the direction of local officials to keep yourself and your loved ones safe. In the unfortunate event that a severe weather system causes property damage to your home or business, know that SERVPRO of Bay County is here and prepared to help. We offer a wide array of storm damage services, including water damage restoration and mold remediation, and with the backing of over 1,700 franchises nationwide, we are Faster to Any Size Disaster.