A tropical storm is an “an intense thunderstorm, categorized by extremely low pressure and cyclonic wind rotation.”
Many people confuse a tropical storm as being a collective name for the storms that develop as a result of a tropical storm such as a hurricane.
The correct collective name for all of the storm systems including tropical storms, hurricanes, cyclones, typhoons and even tropical depressions is called a “Tropical Cyclone” which can be easily confused with the name tropical storm.
A tropical storm develops from a tropical depression which is the combination of warm water and low air pressure.
A tropical storm develops when you add the cyclonic wind rotation to the mixture. Once a tropical storm has developed it will either remain a tropical storm or become a hurricane, typhoon, or cyclone (depending on what region of the world it is located in.)
* Conditions for a Tropical Storm *
Conditions needed for the formation of a tropical storm are warm water temperatures at or above 80 degrees Fahrenheit. A low air pressure system and light wind conditions.
A tropical storm begins development at about 125 feet under the surface of the water, sometimes deeper if the water is not quite the right temperature.
* Formation of a Tropical Storm *
A tropical storm is “an intense thunderstorm, categorized by extremely low pressure and cyclonic wind rotation.”
Once the wind rotation which spins in a counter clockwise motion reaches and sustains a minimum of 39 miles per hour and maximum speed of 73 miles per hour you officially have a tropical storm.
Tropical storms are organized and have all three components found in a hurricane, the rain bands, eye wall and an eye. As the tropical storm moves across the ocean picking up heat it will continue to develop into a hurricane or it will lose its organization and the tropical storm will dissipate.
* Tropical Storm and Landfall *
When a tropical storm hits landfall it brings rain and wind with it and cause some minor damage including flash flooding and the occasion tornado but mostly it just turns an otherwise lovely summer or fall day in to a wet miserable one.
* Tropical Storm Facts *
-ALL Tropical Cyclones (hurricanes, cyclones and typhoons begin as a tropical storm.)
– Tropical storms are named just like hurricanes while tropical depressions and subtropics systems are numbered.
– In 2007, in the Atlantic region there were 15 tropical storms, nine of which remained a tropical storm and five of which developed in to a hurricane.
In the Pacific region there were nine tropical storms in 2007 and four of them developed in to a hurricane.
– 2008 tropical storm prediction is for 13 tropical storms of which seven will reach hurricane status in the Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean.
– 2008 predictions for the Pacific regions are eight tropical storms three of which will reach hurricane status.
Thankfully, the last two years have been relatively calm with only a few tropical storms making landfall as a hurricane hopefully as we enter the 2008 Hurricane season on June 1 the same pattern will continue.