The Saffir–Simpson hurricane wind scale (SSHWS), formerly the Saffir–Simpson hurricane scale (SSHS), classifies hurricanes – Western Hemisphere tropical cyclones – that exceed the intensities of tropical depressions and tropical storms – into five categories distinguished by the intensities of their sustained winds. The wind speeds shown in this image may be lower than winds recorded on the ground. The strongest surface wind gust on record for any Atlantic hurricane was recorded during Hurricane Gustav on Aug. 30, 2008.

A peak wind gust of … Tropical Depression #7 quickly strengthened into Tropical Storm Gustav later on the 25th. Hurricane Gustav - September 1, 2008 . To relate the radar signal to actual wind speed, scientists compare measurements taken from buoys and other ground stations to data the satellite acquired at the same time and place. Gustav continued to strengthen and gained hurricane status early on the 26th as it approached Hispaniola. On August 25th, Gustav formed as the 7th tropical depression of 2008 near the Caribbean.