June 1st - Hurricane Season! Are You Prepared?

June 1st - Hurricane Season! Are You Prepared?

June 1, 2018 and we have already had a Named Storm Alberto make landfall. To be honest I am hoping it isn’t a sign that this Hurricane Season will be a busy one. In fact Jim Efstathiou Jr. in his article Researchers Cool Their 2018 Hurricane Season Forecast says, “While early storms like Alberto can draw a lot of attention, they’re not a sign of an active season.” 
So with that being said, hopefully his prediction is on point. However, that doesn’t take away that the prediction of named storms this year at 12 will not bring dangerous weather that you need to be prepared for. According to the Insurance Information Institute in New York, “there are more than 6.6 million homes with an estimated reconstruction cost of $1.5 trillion along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts.” 
The prediction from NOAA  of 1-4 major hurricanes, 5-9 hurricanes, and 10-16 named storms, you, your family and your business need to be prepared.  Even if you or your area get just a named storm this can cause damage. In fact Alberto caused an “economic loss of 1 billion dollars.” So are you prepared for either a hurricane or damage that may occur due to tropical storms, which could include hail damage, wind damage, water damage, flood or surge damage?
There are many things a homeowner can do and a business owner can do to prepare for this Hurricane Season.
Homeowners, some hurricane damage can be avoided if you prepare correctly and be proactive.
For example Bryan Wood offers these misconceptions and the proper way to prepare in his article Some Hurricane Damage Can Be Avoided:

  • “If I put tape on the windows, it will stop them from being damaged.” Reality: Only shutters or thick plywood can prevent debris from breaking windows.
  • “The hurricane is making landfall far from here and won’t hurt my property.” Reality:Hurricanes can generate flooding hundreds of miles from the center of the storm, impacting homes both inland or along the coast. Hurricane wind fields can also span hundreds of miles.
  • “I only need to board up windows and/or doors facing the storm.” Reality: Hurricane winds will change directions as the storm passes over homes. Debris can be whipped around in odd ways, so the only way to reduce risk is to ensure all windows and doors are covered – regardless of which direction they face.

In his article there is more great advice with overlooked areas such as the trees, and limbs that are on your property, your shingles, and garage door. He also suggest that you take pictures or video’s of your belongings in your home and secure important documents. I put my documents in a water proof bag, and placed in my dishwasher. He also suggest you should create an emergency kit. Being prepared is the key, it is better to be prepared than not be prepared and have to deal with the aftermath of the destruction.
For businesses Andrew Higgins, P.E. gives great advice to be prepared as well. In his article 5 Things Businesses Can Do Now To Prepare For Hurricanes he says:

  • Test and update emergency preparedness plans
  • Understand what events to prepare for
  • Review and update business contingency plans
  • Understand your property insurance policy
  • Make improvements to the building and site

Please go and read the full article which will explain the five things in detail but what we feel is very important is where Andrew says:  “Business owners should take the time to read their current policy and discuss with their brokers what’s covered and where there may be gaps. Determine whether the limits of liability are in line with the current dollar value of the cost to repair or replace the damage.”  Don’t assume you are covered, look over your policy, ask questions and make sure your business is covered correctly.
If we are not your but would like for us to look over your home owners and or business policy please contact us. No obligation, we will help make sure you are covered correctly.
God Speed

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