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What do the hurricane classifications mean?

Category 3 and above are considered 'major.'

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According to the National Hurricane Center, the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale (which estimates potential property damage) is a 1 to 5 rating based on a hurricane's sustained wind speed. Hurricanes labeled Category 3 and above are considered major because of their potential for significant loss of life and damage, the NHC states.

Here's a guide on the hurricane classifications, according to the NHC. 

Category 1: Sustained winds are 74 mph to 95 mph

How would this affect you? Very dangerous winds would produce some damage — to roofs, shingles and gutters; toppled trees, damaged power lines and likely power outages.

Category 2: Sustained winds are 96 mph to 110 mph

How would this affect you? Extremely dangerous winds would cause extensive damage — major roof damage, toppled trees, uprooted trees, damaged power lines and likely power outages.

Category 3 (considered major): sustained winds are 111 mph to 129 mph

How would this affect you? Devastating damage will occur — extensive roof damage, toppled and uprooted trees, power outages, and water shortage.

Category 4 (major): sustained winds are 120 mph to 156 mph

How would this affect you? Catastrophic damage will occur — severe damage to roofs, exterior walls; toppled trees, downed power poles, power outages, water shortages.

Category 5 (major): sustained winds are 157 mph or higher

How would this affect you? Catastrophic damage will occur — A high percentage of homes will be destroyed, with total roof failure and wall collapse; fallen trees, downed power poles, power outages, water shortages.