Updated: Feb 19, 2021
When a natural disaster is imminent there are things you can do to reduce property damage and bodily injury.
Unlike most natural disasters Hurricanes are unique because you are often aware of the danger hours or days in advance. What you do next can make a difference in how you are impacted personally.
Your best defense is to leave. If at all possible, leave the area that will be impacted by the Hurricane. Staying is dangerous and you could be putting your life at risk. Even if you survive the hurricane unharmed, living in an area ravaged by a hurricane is no picnic. You most likely will not have electricity or running water. Most businesses will probably be shut down and you will not have access to essential supplies. More importantly, Emergency resources will be spread thin and response times could be long if you need aid of any kind.
A hurricane is dangerous because it delivers a one-two punch with two very destructive elements; wind and rising waters. The high winds may not be as strong as that of a tornado but because they are constant over a longer period of time, can wreak havoc on structures, trees, and homes. A tornado is also extremely dangerous but usually lasts minutes whereas a Hurricane with its large size can impact an area for hours.
Most of the property damage and personal injuries that occur are from objects blown by the strong winds that become projectiles traveling at very high velocities. This is also true with tornados. But homeowners can be prepared by going on the defense and securing all loose items outside the home. Lawn chairs, portable firepits, and stacks of firewood logs can be flung at speeds in excess of 100 mph causing even more damage than the wind alone.
You can also reduce damage by covering up all weak points on the home with hurricane shutters or make your own with half-inch-thick plywood (min) and placing over window openings and doors to ward off strong winds. Garage doors not rated for Hurricanes are very susceptible to damage. When they fail strong winds are funneled inside the home and upwards blasting off the roof. Reenforcing the inside of the garage door can help reduce the potential damage to the structure.
Rising water poses a different threat, strong winds can push water up increasing tides in some cases several feet. Low lying areas prone to flooding can see catastrophic results. Even areas of higher elevations not associated with flood zones can see dangerous and life threatening water levels.
Sandbags can create temporary levies and are the most common means of attempting to hold back rising waters. If the home has multiple levels move valuables to the highest point in the home if possible. Gas powered pumps can move water but need supervision and fuel two items that require someone to be at the home, which is not ideal as your goal should be on what you can do in preparation prior to the hurricane impact so you can leave in time to go to a safe location.
So, what can you do if you are not home to prepare for the hurricane’s fury? Or if you are elderly and not capable of prepping your home for the looming danger?
Services such as those offered by Haul Buddy may help. Haul Buddy pairs laborers who own trucks, trailers and Vans with consumers that need Items moved, or helping hands to do needed tasks. Prior to a Hurricane impact, laborers can pick up and store outside lawn furniture and other items at a location specified by the homeowner such as a garage, storage unit or warehouse. Items can also be transported from the home to a remote location outside the impact area such as a second home or relative’s house. A thorough vetting process combined with layered insurance assures homeowners a safe experience.
Haul Buddy On-demand hauling and labor services can also respond rapidly after a Hurricane has passed. Our network of haulers can provide cleanup and removal of Debris left behind by the storm which they will load and haul away for proper disposal. In addition, we can help with the delivery of needed items like building materials, generators, water, clothing and food.
To learn more go to www.haulbuddy.com
Terry Groves is the CEO of Haul Buddy an on-demand delivery and Junk removal service