Hurricane Beryl: What are hurricanes, their types?


  • Following their win in the ICC World T20 Cup, the Indian cricket team has been stranded in Barbados due to Hurricane Beryl.

Hurricane Beryl

What do we know about Hurricane Beryl?

  • Hurricane Beryl is the earliest category 4 storm – sustaining winds of at least 130 miles per hour (209 kilometres per hour) – to mark the beginning of the Atlantic hurricane season this year.
  • It is currently surging through the Windward Islands, the southern part of the Lesser Antilles, which form part of the West Indies and comprise Barbados, Grenada and Trinidad and Tobago.
  • Beryl is the strongest storm to impact the Windward Islands since Hurricane Ivan in September 2004.

What are hurricanes and how do they form?

  • Tropical cyclones or hurricanes use warm, moist air as fuel, and therefore form over warm ocean waters near the equator.
  • As NASA describes it, when the warm, moist air rises upward from the surface of the ocean, it creates an area of low air pressure below.
  • Air from the surrounding areas rushes to fill this place, eventually rising when it becomes warm and moist too.
  • When the warm air rises and cools off, the moisture forms clouds.
  • This system of clouds and winds continues to grow and spin, fuelled by the ocean’s heat and the water that evaporates from its surface.
  • As such storm systems rotate faster and faster, an eye forms in the centre.
  • Storms that form towards the north of the equator rotate counterclockwise, while those that form to the south spin clockwise because of the rotation of the Earth.

Are hurricanes becoming more severe now?

  • As hurricanes make landfall, they weaken, since they are cut off from the fuelling moisture provided by the oceans.
  • researchers noted that a warming world may be responsible for the increasingly slow decay of hurricanes.
  • researchers claim that warmer sea surface temperatures induce a slower decay by increasing the stock of moisture that a hurricane carries with it as it hits the land.

What is the difference between a hurricane and a tropical storm?

  • There is no difference. Depending on where they occur, hurricanes may be called typhoons or cyclones. As per NASA, the scientific name for all these kinds of storms is tropical cyclones.
  • The tropical cyclones that form over the Atlantic Ocean or the eastern Pacific Ocean are called hurricanes and the ones that form in the Northwest Pacific are called typhoons.
  • Tropical storms that form in the Bay of Bengal or the Arabian Sea are called cyclones.

How do people protect themselves during a hurricane?

  • During a hurricane, storm surge (abnormal rise of water generated by a storm) and inland flooding are the two main reasons that can cause loss of life.

Source: IE

Visit Abhiyan PEDIA (One of the Most Followed / Recommended) for UPSC Revisions: Click Here

IAS Abhiyan is now on Telegram: Click on the Below link to Join our Channels to stay Updated 

IAS Abhiyan Official: Click Here to Join

For UPSC Mains Value Edition (Facts, Quotes, Best Practices, Case Studies): Click Here to Join

Leave a Reply