Usercane Hype simdarren

Hurricane Hype, the strongest known usercane on August-September 2016.

A usercane is a type of hypothetical hurricane issued to most users of Hypothetical Hurricanes Wiki that meet certain requirements. Usercanes are tracked like real hurricanes, but are much longer lived than hurricanes. Strong usercanes often last several months, sometimes even years. Meanwhile, other weak usercanes dissipate after a day or two. They were first classified by the BNWC in December 2015, and advisories began to be issued for them the next month. The BNWC established the National Usercane Center (NUC) in early 2016, which issued advisories on usercanes, before being temporarily discontinued in September 10, 2016. Other weather centers, such as the HOWC, HTMC, SMWC, CDMC, FMC, KMC and ICON (occasionally) track usercanes. Of those, some such as the FMC, KMC, HTMC, SMWC, CDMC, and ICON have dedicated usercane tracking branches. An average usercane season according to the NUC (2010-2017) features 17.1 named storms, 7.1 usercanes and 5.8 major usercanes, while an average usercane season according to ICON (2010-2016) features 14 named storms, 7.2 hurricanes and 6.1 major hurricanes.

Defining usercanes and naming criteria

Usercanes were first recognized by the BNWC in November 2015, but a system of classification was not made at the time. Due to HHW having five different primary user rights ranks, the "usercane scale" was created. The BNWC eventually established its own specialized usercane branch known as the National Usercane Center (NUC) in May 2016.

Fully Tropical Usercanes

Role Classification
New editor Tropical depression
User Tropical storm
Autopatrolled user Severe tropical storm
Chat moderator (OR rollback without chat moderator rights) Category 1 usercane
Rollback (with chat moderator rights) Category 2 usercane
Junior administrator Category 3 usercane
Administrator Category 4 usercane
Bureaucrat Category 5 usercane
Experienced bureaucrat Category 6 usercane (unused)

The NUC will issue advisories on a usercane if the following requirements are met for the user:

  • The user has at least 100 edits (former requirements: 5 edits before January 1, 2017, 25 edits from January 1, 2017 to January 1, 2019), AND
  • The user has never been on HHW before.

The NUC first used this system with Tropical Storm Destiny of 2016 (which was later declassified), and the procedure was later used throughout the season. However, the HurricaneOdile Weather Center (HOWC) recognizes all users with at least 5 edits as usercanes. Beginning on January 1, 2017, NUC would not initiate advisories unless the user had at least 25 edits. These limits were further revised upwards two years later, and as of January 1, 2019, users are required to have at least 100 edits to be classified.

Subtropical usercanes

Melissa Nov 18 2013 1405Z

Subtropical Storm Floyd on September 15, 2015.

A usercane is considered to be "subtropical" if one of the five conditions are met:

  • The user meets the requirement for classification as a usercane, but does not intend to join HHW full-time. A major case of this was Hurricane Floyd in 2015, which later grew into a powerful fully tropical category 5 storm;
  • The user is blacklisted from user rights;
  • The user is semi-retired;
  • The user has planned to go inactive for a long period of time;
  • The user is slowly coming out of a retired state.

If the user no longer meets one of the five requirements, their usercane becomes fully tropical. Subtropical usercanes very rarely grow into Category 5 intensity whilst subtropical; a very rare case of this was Hurricane BeoBlade in September 2015 during the burst of usercane activity that led to the formation of many intense usercanes.

Extratropical usercanes

When a user retires from HHW, their usercane becomes extratropical. A notable case of this was Hurricane Steve in May 2015, which turned extratropical (which later regained subtropical characteristics one year later).

Remnant lows/post-tropical usercanes

When a user disappears from HHW randomly, or they have stopped editing for a period of time without officially retiring or semi-retiring, they either: degenerate into a remnant low, or turn post-tropical. A notable case of this was Hurricane Jack in 2016, which degenerated into a remnant low in February before reforming in March.


This system has been officially deprecated since January 1, 2019, and will not be used by the National Usercane Center.

From January 1, 2017, to January 1, 2019, users were designated as "invests" if they meet one of the following two requirements:

  • 5 to 24 edits;
  • or 1-5 edits AND a chat appearance.

Prior to January 1, 2017, users were designated as "invests" if they met one of the following two requirements:

  • 1 to 5 edits;
  • or 0 edits AND a chat appearance.


When a user gets banned, they are said to have made landfall. In recent years there has been a significant uptick in landfalling usercanes; notable landfalling usercanes include Puffle, Nkechinyer, and Douglas, all of which made landfall at category 5 intensity. The most recent usercanes that made landfall was Tropical Storm Harris of the 2018 season, which was unexpectedly absorbed by Usercane Hype in mid-March.


Total and average number of
tropical userstorms by month (2010-2017)
Month Total Average per year
January 10 1.3
February 8 1.0
March 4 0.5
April 11 1.4
May 9 1.1
June 15 1.9
July 11 1.4
August 10 1.3
September 18 2.3
October 21 2.6
November 15 1.9
December 9 1.1

The Atlantic usercane season has no seasonal bounds; it runs from January 1 to December 31. There have been a total of 141 tropical userstorms recorded from 2010 to 2017, with an average of about 17.6 per season. Userstorms and usercanes have been recorded in all months. However, some months are more active than others. The most active month, on average, is October, featuring 2.6 storms per year on average. The least active month, on average, is March, averaging only a storm every other year. The season does not have a distinct peak, though it tends to be more active in the summer and fall months during the Atlantic hurricane season.

Usercane ACE

The Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) of a usercane is calculated by summing the squares of a usercane's wind speed in knots at one-week intervals, divided by 10000 (e.g. 40 mph in knots is 35 kts. 35kts multiplied by 35 kts equals 1225. 1225 divided by 10000 equals 0.1225, which is the usercane's wind speed at a specific time). To remain consistent, wind speeds are measured on Fridays at 00:00 UTC. Subtropical cyclones are included, but not systems with winds under 34 kt (39 mph). Usercane Hype so far has the most ACE of all usercanes.

The formula below is used to calculate a usercane's ACE at weekly intervals. "vmax" is the estimated sustained wind speed in knots.

$ \text{ACE} = 10^{-4} \sum v_\max^2 $

Category 5 usercanes

The following usercanes attained Category 5 intensity for at least one advisory. So far, as of June 2018, there have been 26 known category 5 usercanes. Note: This list may be outdated. They are listed as follows:

  • Sjmaven (2010) - 180 mph, 895 mbar
  • Dylan (2010) - 165 mph, 928 mbar
  • Hype (2013) - 280 mph, 797 mbar
  • Ryne (2013) - 175 mph, 902 mbar
  • Dwight (2013) - 160 mph, 929 mbar
  • Douglas (2014) - 160 mph, 966 mbar
  • Cardozo (2014) - 160 mph, 964 mbar
  • Bumblebee (2014) - 165 mph, 931 mbar
  • Layten (2014) - 175 mph, 916 mbar
  • EF5 (2015) - 160 mph, 925 mbar
  • Puffle (2015) - 175 mph, 911 mbar
  • Odile-Roussil (2015) - 160 mph, 920 mbar
  • IceCraft (2015) - 160 mph, 964 mbar[note 1]
  • Nkechinyer (2015) - 165 mph, 904 mbar
  • Austin (2015) - 160 mph, 936 mbar
  • BeoBlade (2015) - 160 mph, 970 mbar[note 2]
  • Bob (2015) - 245 mph, 819 mbar
  • Floyd (2015) - 235 mph, 834 mbar
  • Collin (2015) - 160 mph, 919 mbar
  • Anthony (2015) - 200 mph, 877 mbar
  • Keranique (2016) - 165 mph, 921 mbar
  • Darren (2016) - 165 mph, 918 mbar
  • Garfield-Vile-Porygon (2016) - 240 mph, 819 mbar
  • Brick (2016) - 160 mph, 930 mbar
  • James (2016) - 210 mph, 865 mbar
  • RAM-Akio (2016) - 180 mph, 895 mbar
  • Farm (2016) - 160 mph, 894 mbar

For a complete list of category 5 and category 4 usercanes, see here (please note these estimates are by the ICON Usercane Center and may or may not be official):

Usercane seasons

For a complete list of usercane seasons, go here.

Usercane records

For a condensed list of usercane records, go here.


  • Less than 20 miles - Midget
  • 20-100 miles - Very Small
  • 101-200 miles - Small
  • 201-350 miles - Medium
  • 351-500 miles - Large
  • 501-800 miles - Very Large
  • 801+ miles - Giant


  1. IceCraft was a very small usercane that attained category 5 intensity while subtropical (it did peak as a C3 while fully tropical)
  2. BeoBlade was a small usercane that had subtropical characteristics
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.