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Why are the strongest winds in a hurricane typically on the right side of the storm?wind additiveContributed by Chris LandseaFirst, the "right side of the storm" is defined with respect to the storm's motion: if the hurricane is moving to the west, the right side would be to the north of the storm; if the hurricane is moving to the north, the right side would be to the east of the storm, etc.In general, the strongest winds in a hurricane are found on the right side of the storm because the motion of the hurricane also contributes to its swirling winds. A hurricane with a 90 mph [145 km/hr] winds while stationary would have winds up to 100 mph [160 km/hr] on the right side and only 80 mph [130 km/hr] on the left side if it began moving (any direction) at 10 mph [16 km/hr].Note that the U.S. OAR and other forecasting center advisories already take this asymmetry into account and, in this case, would state that the highest winds were 100 mph [160 km/hr].wind additiveFor tropical cyclones in the Southern Hemisphere, these differences are reversed: the strongest winds are on the left side of the storm. This is because the winds swirl clockwise south of the equator in tropical cyclones.
Hurricane Research DivisionBack to Tropical Cyclones Myths Page | Back to Main FAQ PageSubject: C6) During a hurricane are you supposed to have the windows and doors on the storm side closed and the windows and doors on the lee side open?Contributed by Chris LandseaNo! All of the doors and windows should be closed (and shuttered) throughout the duration of the hurricane. The pressure differences between inside your house and outside in the storm do not build up enough to cause any damaging explosions. (No house is built airtight.)The winds in a hurricane are highly turbulent and an open window or door - even if in the lee side of the house - can be an open target to flying debris. All exterior windows should be boarded up with either wooden or metal shutters.
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The windy side obviously!