TAMPA (May 23, 2014) – With the NOAA Climate Prediction Center announcing their forecast of a normal to below-normal Atlantic hurricane season yesterday, the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) urges residents not to let predictions keep them from preparing for the season.
“Early-season predictions do not always come to fruition,” said Julie Rochman, president and CEO of IBHS. “In fact, the 2012 season was initially forecast to be below-average, partially because of a predicted El Nino event. The El Nino did not develop as expected, and the season was extremely busy, with 19 named storms and 10 hurricanes, including Sandy, which slammed several Northeast states.”
It only takes one hurricane to significantly damage an entire region. Hurricane Andrew was the first storm during the 1992 season, which resulted in devastating damage to south Florida.
While the Gulf and Atlantic states are the most at risk of damage from a tropical system, hurricanes and tropical storms can travel far inland, causing high winds, heavy rain and tornadoes in areas not expecting the damage. Hurricane Hugo, which struck 25 years ago in South Carolina, maintained high winds all the way inland to Charlotte, North Carolina, and caused damage in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia and Connecticut. More recently, Hurricane Ike made landfall in 2008 on the Texas coast and traveled all the way to Ohio, where it caused $1 billion in damage.
IBHS encourages residents to be prepared, and start their hurricane protection efforts now. A variety of resources on strengthening buildings against the high winds and wind-driven rain of tropical systems, can be found at www.DisasterSafety.org (direct links below).
IBHS Hurricane Preparedness Resources:
- Five Recommendations to Protect Your Home from Hurricane Damage
- DIY Hurricane Home Protection Projects
- 5 Ways to Protect Your Home From Water Damage During Hurricane Season
- Keeping a Roof Over Your Head: Hurricane Season Ready
- Business Emergency Preparedness for Hurricane Season
- 10 Business Protection Lessons from Sandy
- Getting the Roof Right Animation Video
- Building a Continuous Load Path Animation Video
Additional information and recommendations are available on IBHS’ hurricane resources page.
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About The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS)
IBHS is an independent, nonprofit, scientific research and communications organization supported by the property insurance industry. The organization works to reduce the social and economic effects of natural disasters and other risks on residential and commercial property by conducting building science research and advocating improved construction, maintenance and preparedness practices.