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How to Prepare for a Busy Atlantic Hurricane Season

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Anyone living on the coast knows hurricanes are no friendly form of nature. Ripping winds and roaring tides have the power to tear apart housing, flood properties, and send debris in all directions. These natural disasters are never ones to take lightly and it certainly requires a great deal of preparation to stay safe and protect homes and buildings.

In 2020, the forecasters of NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Services, is predicting an above-normal 2020 Atlantic hurricane season. With a percentage as high as 60% above-normal, 30% near-normal and only 10% below normal, those living on the Atlantic coast should take steps now to prepare to help prevent damage to their homes and be ready to evacuate as hurricane season has already started.

Storm Predictions

Tornado and Hurricane Damage Repair for Houston, TXAccording to the NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, they are forecasting a range of 13 – 19 storms with winds reaching as high as 40 mph or higher. Of these storms, 6 – 10 can result in hurricanes and 3 – 6 can be major, including category 3 or higher. The NOAA is 70% certain of these forecasts.

The average hurricane season produces about 12 storms, 6 becoming hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes.

How the NOAA Predicts Hurricanes

When the forecasters predict the hurricane season, they factor in a combination of climate measurements. El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) conditions are expected to either stay neutral or lean toward La Nina. This means there won’t be an El Nino present to limit hurricane activity.

Sea-surface temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea are also warmer than average, combined with weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds, enhanced African monsoons, and reduced vertical wind shear, creating the perfect recipe for a strong hurricane season. Conditions similar to these have been producing more active seasons since the high-activity era in 1995.

Technology Used to Measure Storm Activity

To back these predictions, the NOAA’s forecasters use modern computer models and observing technologies to provide an accurate and timely forecast to allow coastal residents enough time to prepare. This year, they claim they are “ready to provide life-saving forecasts and warnings the public rely on.” They also claim as soon as the storms develop, the NOAA hurricane hunter aircraft is prepared to collect the necessary data for the computer models and forecasters.

The NOAA will also upgrade their Hurricane Weather Research and Forecast System as well as the Hurricanes in Multi-scale Ocean coupled hydrostatic model (HMON) this summer. This technology is responsible for incorporating data from radars and satellites from NOAA’s coastal Doppler data networker to release more accurate forecasts of hurricane activity during the season. HMON will also be enhanced to include improved physics, coupling with ocean models and higher resolution.

The NOAA will also begin adding data from the COSMIC-2 satellites into the weather models to measure the hurricane intensity and improve the forecast accuracy. COSMIC-2 also provides data on pressure, air temperature and humidity throughout the tropical regions, the exact locations of hurricanes and tropical storms.

The NOAA will also work with the U.S. Navy to deploy a fleet of autonomous hurricane gliders to explore all conditions throughout the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean, specifically where the hurricanes historically traveled and intensified.

Preparing for Hurricane Season During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Hurricane Harvey Houston floodingAs if social distancing and quarantining amidst the global pandemic isn’t enough, residents living on the Atlantic coast must also make all necessary precautions to prepare for the 2020 hurricane season. NOAA experts claim they will “stay ahead of developing hurricanes and tropical storms and provide the forecasts and warnings we depend on to stay safe.”

As coastal residents do every year, they must prepare for hurricane season. But this year, it is especially crucial. The NOAA notes that social distancing may coincide with hurricane disaster preparedness plans, including:

  • First-aid kits
  • Evacuation routes
  • Shelters
  • Flood insurance

Residents should also beware of the following, depending on their specific location:

Now is the time to adjust your emergency plans because the natural disasters won’t wait. The NOAA strongly encourages all residents to make adjustments where necessary to abide by COVID-19 regulations and prepare for the disasters. They also remind everyone not to forget about pets. Many will become fearful and anxious, so it’s important to keep them safe and as comfortable as possible during stressful times.

Hurricane Preparedness in Eastern and Central Pacific Basins

In addition to the Atlantic side, the NOAA has also issued seasonal hurricane outlooks for both the central and eastern Pacific basins. This is for overall seasonal activity and not landfall forecasts. The Climate Prediction Center will update the official 2020 Atlantic seasonal outlook around the historical peak season, which is August.

For more information about hurricane preparedness, visit the National Hurricane’s Center’s website to stay updated on all watches and warnings.

Hurricane Damage Restoration

hurricane damage repairFor residents living in the Houston area, hurricanes can cause significant flooding and damage throughout homes and buildings of all sizes. Strong winds will rip off home’s siding and roofing, throw around debris and pull trees from their roots. Flood water is also filled with bacteria, possibly even sewage waste, making it toxic for anyone walking in the water.

To repair homes and buildings and restore peace of mind, ServiceMaster Restoration & Cleaning is available 24/7 in the Houston, TX area to provide tornado and hurricane damage repair services. Our technicians are available 24/7 to respond to hurricane damage, whether you need water extraction, biohazard cleanup, mold removal, reconstruction, board up services or other services.

As soon as we arrive, we will conduct a full assessment on the home or building, create the best restoration plan to guarantee a smooth process and address the building materials and items with the highest risk of permanent damage. We will dry, disinfect and/or repair building materials of all types to fully restore your property after a hurricane. ServiceMaster Restoration & Cleaning can also provide content cleaning and pack out services to restore personal belongings like electronics, clothing, furniture and more.

Call ServiceMaster – Available 24/7

Don’t hesitate to contact ServiceMaster Restoration & Cleaning at 800-303-5844 for hurricane damage restoration services in the Houston, TX area if your home or building was severely damaged from the natural disaster.