From the Greek kyklon: rotating, whirling around
A ‘cyclone’ is a huge air mass rotating around an area of low barometric pressure. The result is a major storm with extremely high wind speeds accompanied by heavy rain. In 1996 at Barrow Island, Australia, a gust from the ‘cyclone’ Olivia was recorded at 253 mph.
Serious damage is caused to infrastructure when a ‘cyclone’ reaches land and if the storm is particularly powerful, loss of life is common. A ‘cyclone’ can also cause serious flooding.
In meteorology what is the difference between a ‘cyclone’, a hurricane and a typhoon?
There is little difference in the nature of these storms; the distinction being where they originate. Cyclones occur in the south Pacific region and the Indian Ocean, hurricanes are born in the Atlantic and north-eastern Pacific Ocean, and typhoons brew up in the north-western Pacific.