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Hurricane Severity Scale

The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale


Category 1
Wind: 74-95 mph
Storm surge: 4-5 ft

No real damage to building structures. Damage primarily to unanchored mobile homes, shrubbery, and trees. Some damage to poorly constructed signs. Also, some coastal road flooding and minor pier damage.


Category 2
Wind: 96-110 mph
Storm surge: 6-8 ft

Some roofing material, door, and window damage to buildings. Considerable damage to shrubbery and streets. Considerable damage to mobile homes, poorly constructed signs, and piers. Coastal and low-lying floods. Small craft in unprotected anchorages break moorings.


Category 3
Wind: 111-130 mph
Storm surge: 9-12 ft

Some structural damage to small residences and utility buildings. Damage to shrubbery and trees with foliage blown off trees and large trees blown down. Mobile homes and poorly constructed signs are destroyed. Some flooding in low-lying areas. Flooding near the coast destroys small structures with large structures damaged by battering from floating debris.


Category 4
Wind: 131-155 mph
Storm surge: 13-18 ft

Some complete roof failure and structure failures on small residences. Shrubs, trees, and all signs are blown down. Complete destruction of mobile homes. Extensive damage to doors and windows. Low-lying flooding. Major damage to lower floors of structures near the shore.


Category 5
Wind: ≥155 mph
Storm surge: ≥19 ft

Complete roof failure on many residences and industrial buildings. Some complete building failures with small utility buildings blown over or away. All shrubs, trees, and signs blown down. Complete destruction of mobile homes. Sever and extensive window and door damage.

 

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