Hurricane Category Ranges

Fall 2004 CSANews Issue 52  |  Posted date : May 15, 2007.Back to list

Category 1
Winds range from 75 to 95 mph. This type of hurricane causes minor flooding and damage. Category 1 hurricanes are similar to a normal storm system. Example: Hurricane Irene, 1999.

Category 2
Winds range from 96 to 110 mph. This type of hurricane dislodges small trees and tugs small boats loose from their moorings. It might blow larger limbs down onto homes. Example: Hurricane Bonnie, 1998.

Category 3
Winds range from 111 to 130 mph. Most people are evacuated when this type of hurricane strikes. Strong winds can destroy mobile homes and take down large trees. Flooding can be substantial. Example: Hurricane Fran, 1996.

Category 4
Winds range from 131 to 155 mph. Winds can rip roofs from houses and take down trees of very large size. Flooding can be severe and all types of buildings are susceptible to damage. Example: Hurricane Charley, 2004.

Category 5
Winds of 156 mph and over. Winds can completely level buildings, throw cars and mobile homes, and cause massive amounts of flooding. This type of hurricane almost always demands full-scale evacuation. Luckily, this strength of hurricane very rarely hits land. Example: Hurricane Camille, 1969.