Your Winter Service Berlin


The movement of the air that generally tends to be referred to as wind is very versatile in nature. The movement can occur horizontally to the ground and also vertically; sometimes it changes its direction. That is why it is not easy to measure.

The objective of wind sacks fluttering above bridges that pass over valleys along autobahns is to display the direction the wind is blowing in. To be able to accomplish this feat they must be at a certain angle to the point where they are attached. More exact measurements can be done with an anemometer. The Beaufort scale which is used to characterize velocity is not only based on measurements but also performs its estimations according to the effects it has on the ocean and the land.

Wind becomes a storm when it reaches a speed of at least 75 km/h. When wind has a speed of 84 km/h and higher it is referred to as a severe storm, 103 km and up it is a hurricane-like storm and when it has a speed of at least 121 km/h it is referred to as a hurricane. The highest speed ever recorded in Germany was measured on the Zugspitze - 335 km/h. There are no obstacles on Germany's highest mountain to slow down the wind, whereas there are so many obstacles throughout the country that wind only reaches that speed very rarely.

A storm classified as 9 according to the Beaufort-scale is characterized by branches breaking and smaller damages to houses and roofs occurring; it is also more difficult for people to walk outside. A severe storm is classified as a 10 and uproots trees and can cause great damage to houses and gardens. A storm resembling a hurricane is characterized by severe gusts of wind in forests, unroofed houses and cars that have been driven off roads.

High-speed winds occur only rarely inland. There are too many obstacles breaking the speed, hampering wind which was free to pick up speed when it was over the ocean when it hits land. Thus storm warnings issued by the weather service must be taken very seriously. The danger posed by the storm is not the only aspect that must be taken account of. If a light car is carried over to the oncoming lane it becomes an obstacle for a heavy car or a truck, which would otherwise not be damaged by the storm.

Likewise, obstacles on the road, such as trees that have been blown over, must be paid attention to. Pedestrians are in danger when tiles break off of roofs. Along the coast line you will find high-speed winds much more frequently and thus they are not as unusual. Shipping traffic is also affected by them. Depending on the speed of the wind, smaller ships must remain in the harbor.