Wind Speed can be measured by using a scale of 0-12 based on visual clues originally developed in 1806 by Sir Francis Beaufort. It was originally developed for sailors but was later modified by the National Weather Service for use on land. The terms Calm, Light, Gentle, Moderate, Fresh, Strong, Gale, Whole Gale and Hurricane are used by the National Weather Service to describe Wind Speed and conditions that will be observed. For example Hurricane force winds produce widespread damage while Calm conditions can be observed when smoke rises vertically.
Today, we use a device called an anemometer to measure wind speed. The wind moves the anemometer cups and the speed of rotation is used to calculate the speed the wind is moving.