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The damage to these houses is the result of a powerful hurricane named Charley. In August of 2004, Hurricane Charley tore roofs off buildings, leveled trees, and caused tremendous property damage, forcing people to lose their homes, businesses, and possessions. A year later, in August of 2005, one of the most devastating hurricanes to ravage North America struck the city of New Orleans and the neighboring Mississippi coast. A massive hurricane called Katrina turned out to be the costliest US hurricane on record, and the deadliest US hurricane since 1928. In all, Hurricane Katrina took the lives of at least 1,300 people, and caused at least $80 billion in damage. Hurricanes are large, swirling storms, centered around very low pressure. They form over warm, tropical waters near the equator, typically from June through November. This is a satellite image of a hurricane. You observe. Is the hurricane rotating in a clockwise or counterclockwise direction?
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This hurricane, like other hurricanes in the Northern Hemisphere, is rotating in a counterclockwise direction. A hurricane gets its energy from moisture evaporated off warm ocean waters. As this air rises, clouds form, and more and more air is drawn into the system. As the storm system builds, winds begin to spin in toward the areas of low pressure. At first, a tropical depression forms, with winds from 37 to 63 kilometers per hour, or 23 to 39 miles per hour. Then, a tropical storm forms, with winds up to 119 kilometers per hour, or about 70 miles per hour. When the winds get stronger, the tropical storm grows into a hurricane. Winds may reach speeds of 300 kilometers, or 180 miles per hour. Winds this strong can blow out windows and drive debris through buildings and trees. When a hurricane comes ashore, it often brings high waves and severe flooding. In many cases, a wall of water called a storm surge, accompanies a hurricane near the coast. In the case of Hurricane Katrina, the storm surge was up to 9 meters, or 30 feet high in some places, smashing coastal properties with a wall of water. For these reasons, people living in the path of a strong hurricane are instructed to evacuate to a safe place before a hurricane reaches landfall.
Gale Document Number: GALE|PZBNGY847854667