How to Measure Hurricane Strength: Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale
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November 12, 2021
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The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale is a 1-5 rating based on the hurricane's present intensity.
This hurricane scale is used to give an estimate of the potential property damage and flooding expected along the coast from a hurricane landfall.
Wind speed is the determining factor in the scale, as storm surge values are highly dependent on the slope of the continental shelf in the landfall region. Wind speeds are measured using a 1-minute average.
Note:The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale (SSHWS) was updated in 2012 to accomodate number rounding issues.