Posts Tagged ‘Hurricane’

Hurricane Headscratchers – A Quiz for Preppers

Friday, June 16th, 2017

Hurricane forming

Over the years, we preppers gather a lot of info about the various threats we face. We prepare our car, pets, and pantry for “the first 72 hours,” for long-term shelter-in-place, and for bugging out.

We assemble and test survival gear, food and first aid items – including snake bite kits, liquid skin and anti-radiation pills.

We do a lot of preparing!

And then along comes a hurricane, and we realize we DON’T know everything, after all!

Hurricane season starts this month. Here are a dozen questions about hurricanes pulled from a variety of “reliable sources.” Test yourself and see how well YOU do!

Let’s start our quiz with the easiest questions.

1-The circular, clear space at the center of the hurricane is called the ___? (Just beginning to form in the image above, from NASA.)

2-At the center of a hurricane, does air rise or fall to create the eye?

3-The cloudy outer edge of the eye is called the ______.

4-T or F —  Winds are highest at the eyewall.

5-Precipitation from a hurricane is greatest

  • At the eyewall
  • At the outer edges of the hurricane
  • When the eyewall hits land

6-T or F Once the eyewall starts to weaken, the storm is dying.

7-Match the storm name with the likely location:

  • Hurricane
  • Typhoon
  • Cyclone
  • ——————
  • NE Pacific Ocean
  • South Pacific and Indian Ocean
  • NW Pacific Ocean

8-All these storms are considered “tropical cyclones.” Tropical because they are formed ______ and cyclones because they _________,

9-In the northern hemisphere, the winds of a cyclone blow in which direction?

10-In the southern hemisphere, in which direction do they blow?

11-For us preppers, the greatest threat from a hurricane comes from:

  • Wind
  • Tornado
  • Storm surge
  • Flash flooding

12-The word “hurricane” comes originally from the _____ language.

How well did you do?  Sure you got everything right? Read on if you aren’t sure about some of your answers!

And the answer is . . .

1-The eye of a hurricane (that we’ve all flown through in movies) can be anywhere from 2 miles in diameter to over 200 miles! It is typically clear and calm – although the water below may be violent.

2-In a mature tropical cyclone, sinking air is what creates the eye.

3-The outer edge of the eye is called, not surprisingly, the eyewall. It’s not exactly a vertical wall. Rather, it expands outward with height – called the “stadium effect.”

4 and 5- The eyewall is where everything is happening – the greatest wind speeds, heaviest rain, and air rising most rapidly. (In 2015, winds from Hurricane Patricia reached 215 mph! A category 5 hurricane has winds of 157 mph or greater.)

6-In a large storm, there are a series of rain band rings that move slowly inward. The eyewall can weaken, but then can be replaced by the next band, giving the storm a new eyewall and new strength.

7-Hurricanes occur in the Atlantic and northeastern Pacific. A Typhoon occurs in the northwestern Pacific. And a Cyclone occurs in the south Pacific or Indian Ocean.

8-Tropical storms are “born” in “the tropics,” over warm bodies of water. Their “cyclonic” or rotating winds are a function of the earth’s rotation.

9-Cyclonic winds blow counterclockwise in the Northern Hemisphere.

10-They blow clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere.

11-The greatest threat to life comes from the storm surge – water that is pushed ashore by the storm’s winds. Storm surges can reach 25 feet and be hundreds of miles wide. In November 1970 the storm surge from the “Bhola Cyclone” in Bangladesh was estimated to be 20-30 feet high. Between 300,000-500,000 people in the low-lying regions were killed.

13-The Mayan god of wind “Hurakan” became our word Hurricane. One of the first record of hurricanes is found in Mayan hieroglyphics.

Are you a teacher or leader of any sort, and do you . . .

Want more on hurricanes?

The best short, all-purpose article I found is here:  It has several excellent diagrams showing the parts of the hurricane (eye, eyewall, the rain bands, etc.), how the air sinks and rises, etc. It also lists the different storm categories (rated by wind speed).

If you want the full explanation of the storm categories – the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale — check here:

Enough here for cocktail party or dinner table conversation, eh?

Your Emergency Plan Guide Team

P.S. Hurricane season reaches its height in September. By the time September comes around, if you are in hurricane/cyclone territory, you need to know more than just these tidbits. . .! In particular, be sure you and your group distinguish between hurricane warnings and watches.



Can You Believe This?! Responses to Disaster Warnings

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

Sometime you just gotta shake your head in disbelief.

After all the years of educating . . .

I attended a great conference this weekend. It was held in Las Vegas. Temperatures outside were about 105 degrees while inside the AC was set to 68 degrees. Impossible to be comfortable anywhere.

After years of trying to educate folks on the value of energy efficiency, all I can say is, this just seems stupid.

Allow me to continue with that theme in the world of emergency preparedness,with some examples of

Disaster Warnings

Warning, High Surf Sign

What does this mean to you?

Hurricane season started this week.

I have never experienced one here in Southern California, but certainly we’ve all seen plenty of hurricanes on the news.

And have you also noticed the number of TV newscasters who seem to feel the need to STAND RIGHT OUT IN THE WIND AND WATER, threatened every moment by debris, while telling viewers to take shelter?

Tornados – some 339 of them already in 2014!

How about the local citizen/amateur filmmaker, “getting great footage” of the approaching funnel cloud, who is dragged down into the shelter at the last possible minute by his screaming children?

California wildfires pushed westward by “Santa Ana” winds.

Newscaster: “Why didn’t you follow the evacuation order from the Fire Department?”
Homeowner: “I can’t pack up all my pets, so I guess I’ll just have to die with them. . .”

(This is a true quote.)

High surf advisory issued through Wednesday.

Oh, goodie. Let’s grab the children and head down to the beach and stand on the rocks and watch the giant waves come in. Even better, let’s get out there on our surfboards . . .

Is my cynicism showing?!

Thank goodness for this blog. It gives me the chance to unload my frustrations on you, my loyal reader. The next post will be more uplifting, I promise!

In the meanwhile, if you see something as ahem, “unwise” as any of the above, please point it out the the people and particularly to the newscasters who model or perpetuate such behavior. What are they thinking?!

Your Emergency Plan Guide Team

Please pass this along to friends, and urge them to subscribe to all our Advisories.  Most of ’em are pretty positive!