Staying safe during hurricane season is important for both big and small businesses. The best way to prepare for any tropical storm or hurricane headed your way is by planning ahead. Ensure the continued protection of your employees and property assets with this guide to hurricane preparedness.
According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), “Preparedness is everyone’s responsibility.” While certain measures might be made by your governing authorities, it’s ultimately your priority to protect your business. If major flooding occurred in your area, having the right tools and equipment should be done in advance. Get your business prepared for this year’s hurricane season with the following recommendations.
Evaluate Any Potential Risks
To ensure proper planning, It’s important for you to know how your business could be affected by major weather storms. What scenarios would you face if your business activities were paused or disrupted due to a severe storm? Based on questions from FEMA’s Back-to-Business Self Assessment, you may experience:
- Not having access to office or computer equipment
- Loss of utilities such as gas, electricity, internet, or water
- Having to pay your employees on a limited business income
- Obstructed roadways making it impossible for your employees to commute
- Disruption of your regular business processes
- Storm damage to your property or equipment
Make an Emergency Plan
With an accurate view of your business’s risks, you can better prepare for an incoming storm. Consult with local officials and your employees to formulate an emergency plan that is customized for your business. Every business has different dynamics to consider, such as your location, types of services, and equipment handling. That being said, the goal of any emergency plan is to keep your employees safe and ensure business continuity.
Consider implementing the following safety measures:
- Backing up data or storing it on a cloud for easy access
- Storing important documents in airtight containers
- Mapping evacuation routes
- Installing storm shutters or flood-barriers
- Investing in a first-aid emergency kit
- Setting up a communication tool for employees
Pro Tip: Move any equipment to higher ground or away from windows to guard against damage from rising flood water.
Pay Attention to Weather Alerts
In the days before a hurricane strikes, local news forecasts can help to give you a clear picture of the storm’s path and severity. However, circumstances can change in a matter of days, or in many cases, hours before a storm hits. Make sure you have a way to keep a tab on current weather conditions so that you can plan accordingly. Whether you need to send your employees home early or gather extra supplies, staying up to date will keep both you and your team safe.
Preparing Your Business
The power of hurricanes can’t be underestimated. With high winds ranging from 74 mph or higher, the impact of a hurricane on your business could be catastrophic. Make sure you have the proper plans and flood protection equipment in place to get ready for any storms headed your way.
Not sure where to start? Connect with our team to determine how you should be preparing for a major tropical storm or hurricane.
With less than a month to spare, it’s time to start getting prepared for this year’s hurricane season. According to the latest predictions, we may be experiencing one of the most active seasons in the last couple of years.
For coastal communities or those who live near the Gulf Coast, hurricane season brings a number of hardships. It’s hard to predict exactly what tropical storms or hurricanes we might face in the coming months, especially when “above-normal activity” has been predicted. Learn more about this year’s hurricane season and how you can start getting your properties prepared for the elements.
Beginning of Hurricane Season
The 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season is set to run from June 1 to November 30. While these dates are presumed due to warm summer temperatures and Atlantic ocean weather patterns, it’s important to be prepared year-round. The formation of tropical cyclones is possible at any time, especially when temperatures are high.
Active Season Predicted Ahead
Atlantic hurricane activity is expected to ramp up this year, according to recent reports from meteorologists and climate scientists. Factors such as potential La Niña conditions and high sea surface temperatures were at the forefront of April’s forecasts.
Compared to the 30-year (1981-2010) normalized average of 13 named storms, 7 hurricanes, and 3 major hurricanes, this year’s season forecast is substantially higher. Dr. Todd Crawford, chief meteorologist at The Weather Company, submitted a forecast predicting 18 named storms, 9 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes – one that is Category 3 or higher (115-plus-mph winds) on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.
Pro Tip: Stay up to date with the latest hurricane news with information from the National Hurricane Center, a government agency dedicated to accurate forecasting.
How to Prepare for Flooding
Are you ready for this year’s hurricane season? In the event of a tropical storm or major hurricane, the threat of high wind speeds, hail damage, and extensive rainfall is unsettling. It’s important to install proper flood protection to keep your properties safe from the destructive elements.
One of the best flood protection solutions is a water-filled dam that can be easily installed and transferred to any location. The user-friendly installation of inflatable dams is a great asset, especially when hurricanes are forecasted with little time to prepare.
Stay Safe this Hurricane Season
Protecting your business and your employees is of utmost importance, especially when major storms can bring flooding, power outages, and road closures. No matter what may come this season, Aqua-Barrier is committed to providing you with the solutions you need to stay safe. Design a flood barrier to fit your specific location’s requirements so that you can be prepared for any hurricane making landfall near you.
Connect with our sales associates for more information about getting ready for this upcoming hurricane season.
Hurricane season lasts until November 30. Is your business ready to deal with the potential flooding and severe weather we could be facing over the next 4 months? Before the water starts rising, make sure you’ve taken all the necessary preventive steps to keep your business safe.
Keep Flood Damage to a Minimum
Water damage is one of the most devastating forms of destruction a business can face. To keep your workplace safe, make sure you’ve implemented these 4 crucial steps ahead of time:
- Practice using an Aqua-Barrier
- Secure flood insurance
- Backup your business
1) Practice Using an Aqua-Barrier
Setting up and inflating a water-filled Aqua-Barrier around your business will help keep rising waters away. But before the flooding starts, make sure you know how to properly install the barrier! Review the installation methods and practice inflating and unrolling the Aqua-Barrier in the place you need it to be. Once the time comes, you’ll be ready to quickly set up the Aqua-Barrier and protect yourself.
2) Secure Flood Insurance
If you live in a flood-prone part of the country, flood insurance may be mandatory. Whether it’s required or not, a business located on the coast should always make sure to have excellent flood insurance in case of a disaster. Apply through the federal government’s flood insurance program.
Pro Tip: In tandem, flood insurance and well-built flood barriers are excellent ways to protect your business this hurricane season.
3) Backup Your Business
Property damage isn’t the only concern in a flood. Valuable information and client data can also disappear from water-damaged computers and equipment in your business. Backup every single piece of business information and history in a secure location, whether in cloud storage or in a separate office less prone to flooding. Don’t let a natural disaster cripple your business.
Protecting Your Workplace from Flooding
Unfortunately, there isn’t a realistic method to completely prevent floods from happening. However, you can easily take steps to protect your business and keep water damage as minimal as possible. Your coworkers and budget will thank you for using smart flood control methods.
Connect with us for more information on protecting yourself during hurricane season.
A storm forming in the Gulf of Mexico passed tropical depression status in a matter of hours, earning the title of a tropical storm from the National Hurricane Center on July 11. With winds reaching speeds of 40 mph and a predicted 20 inches of rain in some locations, Tropical Storm Barry is expected to continue growing stronger and potentially even become Hurricane Barry by July 12-13. Landfall is expected on Saturday in mid-Louisiana.
Tropical Storm Barry has already caused significant flooding in New Orleans, and much more is expected this weekend. Although Texas may be lucky enough to escape the worst of the heavy rains and floods, increased rain across the southern Texas region indicates a need to prepare for what’s to come.
How Will This Affect Southern Texas?
The path of the developing hurricane is predicted to just barely miss the Houston area. However, that doesn’t mean Texas will get off scot-free. Houston, Galveston, and the surrounding areas will likely experience a 13-25% chance of hurricane-force winds, according to ABC-13. At least 3 inches of rain is also likely, though downpours should be expected.
Pro Tip: Heavy rains and winds could knock out your power temporarily. If this happens, track Hurricane Barry’s path and upcoming weather through the ABC-13 mobile app.
Protect Your Property from Flooding
Hurricane Barry’s high winds and potential for heavy rains can cause severe damage to unprotected buildings. For your business, consider an Aqua-Barrier to keep the flooding in check and ensure your business can open quickly after the storm has passed. Even a few inches of water can damage your business severely–don’t let it get to that point.
Other Hurricane Preparations
Once the flood barriers are in place, make sure you have all the standard hurricane supplies you’ll need:
- Non-perishable food
- Food and supplies for any pets
- Flashlights and batteries
- A battery-powered radio, battery packs for your phones, or some other way to monitor the weather
- Enough gas to fill your car
While the weather may not get much worse than a severe thunderstorm for much of Texas, power outages are still likely. Additionally, if things escalate and the National Weather Service institutes a mandatory evacuation, make sure you have enough supplies to leave immediately.
Preparing for the Worst
During hurricane season, the weather can behave in a strange and seemingly unpredictable manner. Fortunately, there are plenty of steps you can take to protect yourself and your property from heavy rains and high winds. Take the time to prepare for Hurricane Barry and be ready to sit out the rain over the weekend.
Connect with us to learn more about hurricane preparation and keep an eye on the weather!
Photo Credit: ABCNews
We encourage each of you to consider helping Hurricane Harvey victims. Below are just a few ways to help along with prayers for the families, rescue teams, and relief workers:
8 Ways to Help Those Affected by Hurricane Harvey
American Red Cross – The organization has shelters open, and is shipping truckloads of supplies for distribution;
Salvation Army – The Salvation Army is deploying 42 mobile kitchens – each of which can serve an average of 1,500 meals per day – to staging areas in Dallas and San Antonio. They’ll also distribute supplies of water, cleanup kits, food, and shelter supplies;
United Way – United Way of Greater Houston has established a Flood Relief Fund. Donations will be used to help with both immediate, basic needs and long-term recovery services such as case management and minor home repairs;
Houston Food Bank – Donations to the Houston Food Bank provide meals in emergencies and throughout the year.
San Antonio Food Bank – The San Antonio Food Bank is collecting monetary donations, along with nonperishable goods and supplies like water, baby food, diapers, flashlights, and new batteries;
Feeding Texas and local food banks – Feeding Texas is coordinating with partner agencies to provide donation coordination and distribution of food to the public;
Houston SPCA and SPCA of Texas – These organizations conduct rescues of pets and farm animals, and provide equipment and shelter in emergencies; and
Humane Society of Louisiana – The Humane Society of Louisiana rescues animals from shelters in the hurricane’s path or at risk of flooding.
Hurricanes are massively powerful storms that can leave a wake of devastation in their path. Different types of flooding, destructive winds, and tornadoes are just some of the hazards associated with hurricanes that can have devastating implications for you and your family. It is important to be familiar with the wealth of resources available to you should a hurricane visit your area in 2016. It could mean the difference between life and death for you or a loved one.
Here are some great resources for important hurricane information that you need to know.
Where to Turn for Hurricane Information in 2016
- Download the American Red Cross Hurricane App from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. This is a great resource to monitor hurricane activity and people you care about in any area. It will alert you of Hurricane and Tropical Storm Watches and Warnings within a specified radius you set. You can also let others know you are safe even if your power is out.
- Don’t forget to tune into your local news stations for up-to-date information on school closures, local developing conditions, and other important news about the hurricane.
- Go to DriveTexas.org to keep track of road conditions if you are having to travel. It will keep you informed of closures, construction, damage, flooding, and other information.
- For up-to-date weather reports and hurricane info, stay tuned to your local National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office
- Check out your neighborhood social media pages for need-to-know information including neighborhood groups and info on flooding in the area. This has become a useful tool for local communities to help each other in times of disaster, to fight crime, and to organize neighborhood activities.
Hurricane Season 2016 is Here. Are You Ready?
The time to prepare for hurricanes is before they come. Make sure you and your family are prepared for the myriad of hazards a hurricane can bring: from inland flooding to destructive winds and tornadoes. Be informed about evacuations and what to expect should you need to evacuate. Be familiar with all the resources on hurricane information you have available to you and how they will help you before, during, and after a hurricane comes. From Hydrological Solutions to you and your family this hurricane season, be prepared, be informed, and be safe.