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Hurricane Public Service Announcment Calli Morales – 004 338 111 Nick Burkhart – Shengan Zhan
Hurricane
Public Service
Announcment
Calli Morales – 004 338 111
Nick Burkhart – Shengan Zhan -- 2017

Types of Hurricanes:

It is difficult to truly comprehend the magnitude and strength of hurricanes without

enduring one yourself. The purpose of this document is to properly illustrate the severity,

strength and possible scenario of hurricanes of varying sizes. The five different categories are

measured using the Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.

Category

Wind Speed

Effects

   

Dangerous: Little Damage to living structures. Some mirrors

1

74-95 mph

could be broken or small objects thrown around. Majority of problem caused by flying debris. No major damages or many lives lost.

   

Very Dangerous: Harsh winds can almost certainly shove

2

96-110 mph

people. Nearly all power lost in suburban rural areas. Considerable damage to mobile homes and vehicles. Smaller trees blown over.

3

111-130 mph

Distressing: Structures in construction or built recently are almost guaranteed to be destroyed. Well-constructed homes will have parts blown away. Most structures, large objects and vehicles will suffer heavy damage. Power should be expected to be out for days/weeks. Some lives are likely to be lost.

4

131-155 mph

Devastating: Older or small homes are almost certainly destroyed. Major erosion in most non-urban areas. Mobile- homes, vehicles and large objects will suffer major damages. Any vegetation will likely be killed. All trees, plants, and signs blown over. Urban areas will suffer damages to lower levels due to inundation. Terrain under the 10ft mean sea level may flood inland up to 8 miles. Many deaths.

 

156 mph and

Catastrophic Damage: Massive evacuation of region must be taken. Extreme damage to all buildings. Nearly all homes comprised of under 20 units will be destroyed. Major number of deaths and loss of power for weeks-months. Terrain under the 15ft mean sea level may flood inland up to 5-10 miles.

5

up

 

Hurricane Paths:

There are multiple factors which are taken into play when understanding the wind speed,

size, and location. With hurricanes which touch the United States, they almost always tend to

coagulate near the Atlantic Basin. It is due to the variation between colder and warmer water

temperatures in these locations that hurricanes are able to ensue. Warmer water is provided by

the Gulf Stream, keeping up the strength of the hurricane (ScientificAmerican). A majority of

hurricanes tend to circle from the east and then arch their way up the south of the US and into the

east. The graphic below illustrates a typical path a hurricane may follow when touching down on

land in the Unites States. Each path illustrates a different strength shown on the Simpson Scale.

As some hurricanes are more powerful than others, some areas are more susceptible to

tier forces. Because of geographic differences, some counties may experience more damadge

areas are more susceptible to tier forces. Because of geographic differences, some counties may experience more
than others despite having a less powerful hurricane strike them. While a major hurricane has

than others despite having a less powerful hurricane strike them. While a major hurricane has the

power to shock large regions, there are geographic differences that make some areas more

vulnerable than others. Some factors include: high tide, elevation, infrastructure age, hurricane

path, and more. In addition, while a hurricane may cause minimal damage in terms of number of

lives lost, it is very possible that it can be something very costly to the country. Below is a list of

vulnerable counties to such events. County Willacy Harris Galveston St. Mary Orleans Plaquemines Jackson Brevard Palm Beach Miami-Dade

State

Population

Texas

21, 903

Texas

4,441,000

Texas

314,198

Louisiana

110,382

Louisiana

41,984

Louisiana

23,447

Mississippi

210,287

Florida

556,885

Florida

1,398,000

US Census

Florida

2,663,000

factfinder.census.gov

As one can see, a majority of the most vulnerable selected areas fall near where

As one can see, a majority of the most vulnerable selected areas fall near where the warm

and cool water meet. This is because a majority of the hurricanes which develop in this region

not only tend to strike land (some hurricanes do not), but also because the mixing of water leads

to a more powerful impact when the storm does touch land.

In addition, these points are particularly vulnerable because of their hurricane history.

Areas in Florida, Louisiana and Texas are the states which have been hit the most with

hurricanes in the United States. In addition, many of these counties are home, or very proximal,

to popular city locations, like

Houston, Miami-Dade,

Tampa, and more. These

cities hold millions of people

and have much money

invested in their

infrastructure. While many

of these areas have

experiences their fair share

people and have much money invested in their infrastructure. While many of these areas have experiences
of hurricanes, because their geographic position places them near the ocean. Another reason as to

of hurricanes, because

their geographic position

places them near the

ocean. Another reason as

to why these regions are

vulnerable to hurricanes is

their mean elevation. For

example, much of Florida,

while surrounded in 3

sides by water, also has an average mean sea level of below 10 feet. With storm surges ranging

in the double digits, it is important to think of the literal and life cost that can come to powerful

hurricanes. If a hurricane carries with it a high storm surge, it carries with it the ability to destroy

a majority of whatever is in its path. The highest storm surge ever recorded was during hurricane

Katrina with a high water mark of over 34 feet. (wunderground.com) This however was an

exception because a high tide was running over 10

ft. at the time, making it especially deadly. The

higher the storm surge, the more destructive and

uninhabitable the region becomes afterward. These

storm surges have the ability to continue on for

miles inland.

Miami, Florida

This region has endured multiple hurricanes

in the past. However, if we look at the more recent

inland. Miami, Florida This region has endured multiple hurricanes in the past. However, if we look
history of Miami-Dade, it has not had a major hurricane in over 25 years. Some

history of Miami-Dade, it has not had a major

hurricane in over 25 years. Some experts say this is

long overdue and it likely to be catastrophic to its

people and economy. When we look at a possible

hurricane scenario occurring here, it is important to

take into account that a majority of the population

resides within the first few miles of the coast. In

addition, most of the population in Miami resides

within the first 20 miles off the coast. There is no

surprise that people from all over the world visit

Miami as a getaway. Its luxurious suites and lavish life attract wealth and prosperity, but is a

category 3, 4 or 5 storm were to fall, it would completely destroy on of the richest counties in the

world. Its flat surface provides little deflection from rough winds, and proximity to water make it

extremely vulnerable Because of its beaches and

touch of it attracts wealth from all over the world. In

many cases, expensive hotels and beach houses make

Miami one of the richest counties in the United

States. Should a large storm hit this area, Floridas

attractive beaches would be ruined and any habitable

life destroyed. While there have been many storm in

the past in this region, Mother Nature does not keep

count.

habitable life destroyed. While there have been many storm in the past in this region, Mother