What’s the difference between a typhoon and a hurricane?

There isn’t much difference between a typhoon and a hurricane, beyond their names and locations, they’re both tropical cyclones.

Typhoons are hurricanes that occur in the western part of the Pacific Ocean or over the Indian Ocean. Hurricanes always take place on the Atlantic Ocean or the Caribbean Sea.

Hurricanes get their name from the Spanish huracan, taken from the Taino Indians’ hurtikan, which they might have gotten from the Arawak Indians, who have a word kulakani that means “thunder.”

Typhoons get their name from tai fang, a word in a Chinese dialect that means “great wind.”

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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