Life on Florida’s sunny, wave-kissed coast can be idyllic–until it’s not. The flipside to beach living is hurricane season with powerful storms that can move from the coast to inland locations with surprising speed and force. Both residential and commercial property owners must take hurricane preparedness seriously and make reliable emergency management plans in order to protect themselves, their structure’s occupants (and pets), and the properties themselves from the ravishes of powerful storms that may be reminiscent of Hurricane Ida and other hurricanes that made landfall along Florida’s coasts.
The Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico can spawn severe weather any time of year, but during hurricane season, storms can be particularly fierce for coastal property owners. In order to protect your property, use the following tips to safeguard yourself, your family, or your employees and customers from severe weather. While you can’t stop a hurricane or tropical storm from battering Florida’s coast, you can take tried-and-true measures to protect what you can in your little corner of the state.
Whether you’re a homeowner or business owner, you need a carefully thought out natural disaster plan. Unlike the West Coast where earthquakes and forest fires are more likely to occur than hurricanes, Floridians must focus on the potential of a tropical cyclone or extremely powerful storm systems that can produce storm surges and flooding. You can guard against the ravages of a hurricane natural catastrophe by, first, making a hurricane prep plan that includes all the steps you need to take and supplies you need to purchase to ensure reasonable safety during severe inclement weather. While many plan steps for residential and homeowners will necessarily overlap, some will differ. First, we’ll discuss general hurricane preparedness steps and then explore some unique steps that different types of property owners should take to protect their homes or businesses.
Think about your hurricane disaster plan as a course of action to prioritize. Don’t wait until the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration or National Hurricane Center tracks a hurricane en route to the Miami coast if at all possible. Supplies run out quickly for items like plyboard and even bottled water. Rest assured–tropical storms that require emergency preparedness will affect Floridians at some point (and probably more often than you’d like). The sooner you create your plan and put it into action, the sooner you can relax, knowing you’ve done what’s best to safeguard your property.
To properly prepare for a hurricane, you’ll need a wide range of supplies, including:
If the weather prediction calls for hurricane prepping, you’ll want to take the following steps to protect your home and everyone in it:
If the Hurricane Prediction Center forecasts a hurricane or severe tropical storm, be sure your business or commercial property is prepared. You may wish to take the following steps:
Once severe weather strikes your area, it’s important to monitor the situation. That’s why you need battery-operated devices that allow you to tune in to your local and national weather prediction center. You’ll want to pay attention to factors like the wind miles per hour, ocean current and storm surge predictions, local conditions, information issued by the Coast Guard, information about storm shelters (which could change during the storm and its aftermath), roadway information (also subject to change depending on area conditions like flooding), and evacuation warnings. The National Weather Service provides information related to hurricanes forecasts for people in affected areas.
Be sure to consider marine safety when weather services issue severe storm or hurricane warnings. Vessels at sea should take every measure to avoid the 34 KT wind field. Use ocean current tracking equipment and always track the weather carefully when sailing because of the inherent marine risks of storms. When a storm is tracked, continually plot its course to be aware of any shifts that may occur and affect your vessel’s course. Also, record barometer readings each hour. If possible, switch from auto-controlled steering to manual steering.
Other marine safety measures to take with your boat include:
If a hurricane is forecast, you’ll have to decide whether to remove your boat from the water or anchor it in position. If you decide to leave your boat in the water, use at least two anchors to secure the bow so that it faces the direction of prevailing winds. Cover engine vents and plug the stern’s exhaust pipes. If you have a small craft, use a boat launch to remove it from the water and move it inland to a protected area if you can. Do not leave your boat on a hydraulic lift, however, during a hurricane.
If you live along the Eastern and Southern coasts where hurricanes and tropical storms are known to strike, you must take hurricane preparedness seriously. With a good disaster plan in place, you’ll be ready when the next hurricane strikes. Use these tips but be sure to track all storms that head toward your section of the coast, and revise your plan as needed. Need advice about boat launches or seawalls? You can consult with Norway Nautical for advice and help with your marine projects.