The 2019 hurricane season is here! The National Hurricane Center explains that 97% of all hurricanes occur between June 1st and November 30th. Hurricanes are less likely in the beginning of the season but not impossible. Protect your home by preparing for this season before disaster strikes your home or business.

Hurricane Facts

A hurricane is made up of many conditions coming together to create the perfect storm. The National Weather Service writes that the following six conditions create hurricanes.

  • Ocean temperatures need to be above 79 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Hurricanes can only occur in areas that are at least five degrees latitude away from the equator.
  • Heat needs to be produced near the center of the hurricane due to the condensation of water vapor. This is called a saturated lapse rate.
  • Wind speed needs to drop with height. High winds that are strong can destroy storms.
  • High humidity is needed through multiple layers of the atmosphere.
  • If a thunderstorm encounters the conditions mentioned above, it will turn into a tropical storm or hurricane.

Flooding

Heavy rain accompanies every hurricane making flooding a very real possibility. Flash floods and prolonged flooding are both common. Long-term flooding usually occurs in areas surrounding rivers.

High Winds

One of the attributes of a hurricane are winds that are at least 74 miles per hour. A category 5 hurricane has winds of at least 157 miles per hour. The extreme winds alone are enough to destroy buildings and infrastructure. In addition, any debris that is picked up by these winds become hazardous “missiles” with the ability to be carried long distances.

Storm Surges

Hurricane conditions often produce large, strong waves. Storm surges have been known to demolish roads, marinas and buildings along coast lines. Even structures that can withstand high winds and flooding have a difficult time tolerating storm surges.

What to Expect this Season

The 2019 hurricane season is already underway. We saw the first major storm in May, which technically isn’t a part of the season. Most hurricane predictions for this year are about average. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), “This outlook forecasts a 40% chance of a near-normal season, a 30% chance of an above-normal season and a 30% chance of a below-normal season.” Basically, this season should not be abnormal. However, this doesn’t mean that the normal number of hurricanes, about 4-8, won’t cause damage. Now that hurricane season is here, don’t forget to prepare.

How to Prepare

  • Make an emergency kit. This should include food, water, a battery-operated radio and any other necessities you may need to spend a few days without access to electricity or a grocery store.
  • Create a plan. Decide with your family on a safe meeting place, evacuation routes and the location of your emergency kit.
  • Sign up for emergency alerts. Find your area’s alert system to make sure you don’t miss a hurricane warning. The more time you have to prepare, the better off you’ll be.
  • Take photos or video of your belongings. This step can make filing insurance claims a lot easier.
  • Protect your paperwork. Ensure you have digital copies of important paperwork that can be accessed from anywhere.

ServiceMaster Professional Cleaning in West Tennessee is your local damage restoration experts. If you experience water damage this hurricane season, contact us at 888-930-3351.

Photo by: istockphoto.com/Darwin Brandis