Cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons

Cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons

Tropical Cyclones are low pressure systems that form over warm tropical waters and have gale force winds (sustained winds of 63 km/h or greater and gusts in excess of 90 km/h) near the centre. Severe tropical cyclones are called hurricanes or typhoons in some parts of the world. Tropical cyclones are dangerous because they produce destructive winds, heavy rainfall with flooding and damaging storm surges that can cause inundation of low-lying coastal areas.

Storm surges and tides

Potentially, the most destructive phenomenon associated with tropical cyclones that make landfall is the storm surge. In Myanmar, on 3 May 2008, a storm surge from Cyclone Nargis of a 3.5 m high wave flooded low lying regions of the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) Delta. The removal of mangrove forests, which serve as a buffer between the rising tide, big waves and storms and residential areas contributed to the death toll. Saltwater flooding of the delta will damage future planting of rice for the foreseeable future.

For more information on Cyclone dangers and impacts, storm surge and tides, naming of cyclones and the severity categories of Tropical cyclones, See More .
With acknowledgement to the Bureau of Meteorology, Australian Government.