Hurricane Irma has quickly ratcheted up in intensity to a Category 5 storm and has the potential to be one of the strongest storms ever over the Atlantic, but no matter how strong it gets, Irma won’t be classified as a Category 6 storm.
That level of storm doesn’t exist.
Some are warning of the devestation Irma will wreak when it hits Category 6, but that won’t happen. The National Hurricane Center only ranks storms on a 1-5 scale.
A Category 5 hurricane constitutes a major storm with catastrophic damage expected: it means houses will be destroyed; trees will be ripped out of the ground and power poles will be knocked over. Power outages will last for weeks to months and most of the area hit will be uninhabitable for an extended period of time.
For context, Harvey was a Category 4 hurricane.
There is no higher level of hurricane than Cat 5.
Still, some people on social media seem confused and worried about the possibility of a Category 6 Irma.
“If Irma becomes a category 6 hurricane in the Atlantic, Canada may end up with Cuba as another province,” one person tweeted.
A state of emergency has been declared in both Puerto Rico and Florida over the storm and some on Twitter – worries about the nonexistent “Category 6 – are saying Floridians should evacuate.
“Irma is expected to be a category 6,” one person tweeted. “That’s actually OFF the chart & the worst this country has had. So if you live in Florida.. GET OUT NOW.”