Strange News

Giant Fans Used As Hurricane-Force Winds

  • Playlist
  • Download
  • Embed
    <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Researchers in South Carolina used 105 giant fans to create hurricane-force winds in an experiment that crumpled an ordinary home in minutes but left a better-built home standing.


Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep.

Insurance researchers in South Carolina wanted to test some home designs in a hurricane, so they used giant fans to create 100-mile-per-hour winds. Within minutes the fans collapsed a conventional home. A stronger, if somewhat more expensive house did fine. There is one detail we don't know. We do not know if researchers made this test fully realistic by including a TV reporter struggling to stay upright in the wind.

You're listening to MORNING EDITION.

Copyright © 2010 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and Terms of Use. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor

Support comes from