Hurricane Season is here.  Below you will learn about the different categories of hurricanes and the effects they may have should you be in one’s path.


Cat 1

Category 1 Hurricanes have wind speeds of 74 mph to 95 mph. Category 1 hurricanes strong winds can produce some damage:

  • Homes could have damage to roof, shingles, vinyl siding, and gutters.
  • Large branches of trees will snap and some trees become completely uprooted.
  • Extensive damage to power lines and poles which will likely result in power outages.


Cat 2

Category 2 hurricanes have wind speeds of 96 to 110 mph. Category 2 hurricane winds can also cause damage to residential roofs, windows, siding, and doors. Even windows in big can be damaged and broken.  Winds are also strong enough to break power poles, which can in turn create blackouts and power outages for days.


Cat 3

Category 3 hurricane has winds of 111 to 129 mph. Any hurricane of Category 3 strength or higher is considered a “major” hurricane. Along with the type of damage as in a category 1 & 2 comes the destruction of some buildings. These buildings may include shed, car ports, detached garages, even mobile homes. Many trees may be down blocked roads.  Electricity and water may be unavailable for days. Substantial flooding along the coast is to be expected. The 3rd deadliest hurricane in US history was Katrina in 2005 as a category 3 hurricane.


Cat 4

Category 4 hurricanes are very strong, with winds of 130 to 155 mph. Most buildings such as houses, mobile homes, and stores can suffer extreme damage and even destruction. Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas.  Flooding in most areas can be severe. Evacuation on area residents may be required.  The deadliest US hurricane was a category 4, the Great Galveston Hurricane in 1900.


Cat 5

Category 5 hurricane packs winds of more than 155 mph. Catastrophic damage will occur with category 5 hurricanes. Most buildings in the path are damaged or destroyed. Trees are blown over. Road signs are destroyed. Power lines are knocked over. Power outages will last for weeks to possibly months.  Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months. Some towns hit by Category 5 hurricanes take years to recover. Hurricane Andrew was the last Category 5 Hurricane to hit the United Sates in 1992.