Wednesday, February 17, 2010

NOAA Changes Hurricane Scale

NOAA National Weather Service will use a new hurricane scale in 2010 called the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. This is an adjustment from the many years of using the Saffir-Simpson scale. The new title includes "wind scale" because it is now the main factor in distinguishing hurricanes. Storm surge and flooding effects are not longer connected to the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.

Here is a quote from the latest NOAA release...
"The decision to implement the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale was based, in part, on an assessment of the responses received during a 2009 public comment period. The descriptions of wind impacts in the new scale were updated with assistance from highly respected wind scientists from academia and industry."

I believe this will be a good change for distinguishing the characteristics of different hurricanes. Many in Mississippi remember Katrina was only considered a Category 3 at landfall, but the coastline was majorly effected by flooding because the storm was very large.

The NOAA statement also says storm surge details will continue to be listed in hurricane advisories from the National Hurricane Center.

No comments: