Tsunami vs Hurricane: Difference and Comparison

Both tsunamis and hurricanes are natural calamities that can cause a disaster in the world within a few minutes. Although, both the causes have totally different features and ways of spreading.

A tsunami comes in a series of waves that are caused by the massive level of displacement in the water bodies, while a hurricane, on the other hand, is a storm with a very powerful effect.  

Talking of the origin of both disasters, well, both of them are formed with totally different forces. Hurricanes are formed during warm months over warm ocean bodies. In contrast, tsunamis are formed by different underwater eruptions like- volcanic explosions, landslides, etc. 

Key Takeaways

  1. A tsunami is a series of ocean waves triggered by an earthquake, volcanic eruption, or other underwater disturbance. At the same time, a hurricane is a large storm system that originates in the tropics and brings heavy rainfall, strong winds, and storm surges.
  2. Tsunamis can travel across entire ocean basins and cause widespread destruction along coastlines, while hurricanes affect smaller areas and can cause damage to structures, trees, and power lines.
  3. Tsunamis are caused by natural disasters that occur underwater, while hurricanes are fueled by warm ocean waters and can form over several days or weeks.

Tsunami vs Hurricane 

A tsunami is a series of powerful water waves that rise from the water bodies. It occurs due to the disturbance in the water bodies caused by various factors, including earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, etc. Hurricane is a storm that brings strong winds and heavy rainfall and occurs in warm months.

Tsunami vs Hurricane

Tsunamis are formed due to the explosions under the water that causes vertical rock movements and forms huge waves of water together, making way for a tsunami.

A tsunami can be caused by any underwater activity like- volcanic explosions, landslides under the water, etc. Basically, any disturbance, be it above the water or be it below the water, can cause a tsunami.  

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Hurricanes are powerful storms formed during warm months over warm water bodies. Hurricanes have a diameter of about 400-500 miles.

The center of the hurricane is called the eye of the hurricane, which can be about 20 miles. At the eye part of the hurricane, it is quite calm and smooth in the winds and has clear skies.  

Comparison Table

Parameters of Comparison  Tsunami  Hurricane  
Cause  Caused by any underwater activity like a volcanic explosion.  Caused on warm water bodies that can give rise to huge winds.  
Occurrence  Tsunami occurs in the area of or near the Pacific Ocean. Chances of occurrence in the Pacific Ocean are about 80 percent.         There is no specific area or region for hurricanes as they can take place anywhere. They are even known with different names in the different regions.  
Origin of the word  The word tsunami has a Japanese origin. Where “Tsu” means the Harbour and “Nami” means waves.  The word hurricane was originated in Australia in the 19th century.  
Presence  Tsunamis are strong tidal waves in the oceans and water bodies.  Hurricanes are huge and disruptive winds in the atmosphere.  
What is it  A tsunami is a set of large and huge waves that are formed due to explosions under the water, causing some vertical movements of the rocks.  Hurricane is a system of very large and disruptive storms that are formed in the warm months of the year over the warm oceanic bodies   

What is Tsunami? 

Tsunamis are formed due to the explosions under the water that causes vertical rock movements and forms huge waves of water together, making way for a tsunami.

A tsunami can be caused by any underwater activity like- volcanic explosions, landslides under the water, etc. Basically, any disturbance, be it above the water or be it below the water, can cause a tsunami. 

According to some research, about 80 percent of the time, tsunamis occur in or around the area of the Pacific Ocean. The word tsunami has a Japanese origin. Where “Tsu” means the Harbour and “Nami” means waves.  

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The waves of tsunamis have small heights but are very long in wavelength that can be offshore too. The wavelength of a tsunami can sometimes be even more than or equal to hundreds of kilometers.

And this is why the waves of a tsunami can be unnoticed in the sea and cause great damage afterward.  

Tsunami

What is Hurricane? 

Hurricanes are powerful storms formed during warm months over warm water bodies. Hurricanes have a diameter of about 400-500 miles.

The center of the hurricane is called the eye of the hurricane, which can be about 20 miles. At the eye part of the hurricane, it is quite calm and smooth in the winds and has clear skies. 

There is no specific place or area for the occurrence of hurricanes. They can happen anywhere. Different names in different regions also know them.

They are called storms in the North Atlantic and Caribbean regions, typhoons in the western part of the Pacific Ocean, and cyclones in the region over the Indian Ocean.  

Hurricane

Main Differences Between Tsunami and Hurricane

  1. The main difference between a tsunami and a hurricane is that a hurricane is a system of disruptive storms that are formed in the warm months of the year over the warm oceanic bodies, while a tsunami, on the other hand, is a set of large and huge waves that are formed due to explosions under the water. 
  2. Tsunamis occur in the area of or near the Pacific Ocean, while hurricanes can happen anywhere.  
  3. The word tsunami originated from a Japanese word, while the word hurricane originated from Australia. 
  4. A tsunami is a set of tidal waves in the water bodies, while hurricanes are the storm of wind in the atmosphere.  
  5. Tsunamis cause eruptions in the water bodies and sometimes in the area around them, but hurricanes destroy the land as they occur in the atmosphere.  
Difference Between Tsunami and Hurricane
References
  1. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=iGYj3eT384MC&oi=fnd&pg=PR7&dq=what+is+tsunami&ots=cEbO4K7Tf3&sig=v4azVyYCn8FOo1ciw3lnW3Mpg64
  2. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=JyxRAAAAMAAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PA1&dq=what+is+hurricane&ots=uIugLe4PL_&sig=6QEypnIyJYP8vh6T2a0VbLpnIX0

Last Updated : 17 June, 2023

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27 thoughts on “Tsunami vs Hurricane: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The comparison table really helps in understanding the disparities between tsunamis and hurricanes, it’s a well-structured article.

    Reply
  2. The article did a great job of highlighting the key differences between tsunamis and hurricanes, making it easy to comprehend.

    Reply
  3. The way the article delineates the differences between tsunamis and hurricanes is commendable, particularly with the specific examples provided.

    Reply

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