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What’s the difference between a hurricane and a typhoon?

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  • What’s the difference between a hurricane and a typhoon?

    What’s the difference between a hurricane and a typhoon?

  • #2
    Aside from the name, not much. Both are severe tropical systems that have wind speeds greater than 74 mph.

    They are called "hurricanes" in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean and eastern Pacific Ocean. But once you go west across the International Dateline and into the western Pacific Ocean, they're called typhoons.

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    • #3
      cjohnsrud, you beat me to it, +1 for you.

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      • #4
        According to USA Today weather editor, Doyle Rice, "They are two different names for the same kind of storm -- a tropical cyclone, which is a low-pressure area in which the central core is warmer than the surrounding atmosphere. They’re called hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean and the Eastern Pacific Ocean, and typhoons in the Western Pacific. In addition, these storms are known as cyclones in the Indian Ocean and around the Coral Sea off northeastern Australia."

        However, I thought that hurricanes rotated clockwise while typhoons turned counterclockwise. Does anyone know if this is true?

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        • #5
          I heard that rotation of the storms is dependent on the hemisphere of the storm. Northern and southern hemispheres run counter to the other. It was someone from Australia who told me that, where one runs clockwise and as he said the other anti-clockwise.

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          • #6
            I heard the same thing about toilets flushing clockwise or counter-clockwise, depending on which hemisphere you are in, but when I did an Internet search for the answer, everyone seems confused.
            The best answer I could find was from a plumber who said, "I am a plumber from Ireland who has visited the U.S,A, and now lives in Australia. Most of the toilets in the states are syphonic and so they swirl when the pan is emptying, while most of the toilets in Australia are washdown W.C,s and do not swirl when emptying. However washhand basins and sinks do swirl when emptying no matter where you are on the Earth and I can tell you it is an absolute fact that in Ireland the swirl is clockwise while here in Australia it is anti-clockwise.

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            • #7
              It's just labels based on geography. Pretty much everything stated above is correct. If a tropical cyclone hit's my home in Florida, it's a hurricane--where they call it by another name, the difference is just semantics--the destruction is what really matters.

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              • #8
                It depends where it occurs.

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