CYCLONE HAZARDS


2.2 Saffir–Simpson Scale and associated cyclone hazards
The Saffir–Simpson Scale is a guideline for the damage potential of a tropical cyclone based solely on sustained windspeed (Saffir and Simpson, 1969). Potential cyclone damages due to storm winds, storm surges and storm waves associated with the five Saffir–Simpson categories are shown in Figure 2.1, Table 2.1 and 2.2.

Figure
2.1 Windspeed based on the Saffir–Simpson Scale and
associated cyclone damage levels (USACE, 2002)
Cat Central
pressure
[mb]
Wind
speed
[km/h]
Peak storm
surge
elevation
above MSL
[m]
Cyclone centre
forward speed
[km/h]
Storm surge
rise time
[hr]
Average beach
erosion volume
[m3/m shoreline]
Max. beach
erosion volume
[m3/m shoreline]
Damage
potential
1
>980
119–
153
1.2–1.7
50–88
2.5–4.5
3.0–8.3
6.3–17.6
Minimal
2
965–979
154–
177
1.7–2.6
29–50
4.5–7.5
8.3–25
17.6–53
Moderate
3
945–964
178–
210
2.6–3.8
19–29
7.5–11
25–63
53–133
Extensive
4
920–944
211–
250
3.8–5.5
10–19
11–21
63–190
133–400
Extreme
5
<920 b="">
>250
>5.5
<10 b="">
>21
>190
>400
Catastrophic