Why do hurricanes go from east to west?

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Dear Tom,
The weather goes from west to east. Why do hurricanes go from east to west?
— Tony Patzkowsky, Tinley Park
Dear Tony,
It’s certainly true that, in general, weather systems move from a westerly to an easterly direction in the mid-latitudes, but almost all hurricanes form and initially travel in the subtropics. The prevailing circulation there is from east to west. That means all weather systems, including tropical cyclones, move approximately westward.
The northern boundary of the Northern Hemisphere subtropical zone is at about latitude 32 degrees north, but it varies depending on the weather situation. Southern Georgia is approximately on that latitude. As tropical cyclones (and hurricanes) move westward, they tend to get caught in mid-latitude westerlies and move north, then northeast or east.

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