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Hurricanes are among nature’s most terrifying and destructive forces. What begins as small disturbances can become fierce mega-storms as they gather strength and size over the ocean. The ones that make landfall over populated areas can cause tremendous destruction.

Category 5 hurricanes are tropical cyclones that reach Category 5 intensity on the Saffir–Simpson Hurricane Scale. They are by definition the strongest hurricanes that can form on planet Earth. They are rare in the eastern Pacific Ocean and generally form only once every several years. There has been a Category 5 storm in the Atlantic for the last 4 years.

Here’s how to prepare for a Category 5 hurricane.

  • Check with your local building control authority to see if your home has been built to cyclone standards.
  • Check that the walls, roof, and eaves of your home are secure.
  • Trim treetops and branches around your home.
  • Preferably fit shutters, or at least metal screens, to all glass areas.
  • Clear your property of loose material that could blow about and possibly cause injury or damage during extreme winds.
  • In case of a storm surge/tide warning or another flooding, know your nearest safe high ground and the safest access route to it.
  • Prepare an emergency kit containing:
    • a portable battery radio, torch, and spare batteries;
    • water containers, dried or canned food, and a can opener;
    • matches, fuel lamp, portable stove, cooking gear, eating utensils; and
    • a first aid kit and manual, masking tape for windows and waterproof bags.
  • Keep a list of emergency phone numbers on display.
  • Check neighbors, especially if they are recent arrivals, to make sure they are prepared.

Based on predicted wind speeds and storm surge heights, evacuation may be necessary. Official advice will be given on local radio/TV regarding safe routes and when to move.

  • Wear strong shoes (not thongs) and tough clothing for protection.
  • Lock doors; turn off power, gas, and water; take your evacuation and emergency kits.
  • If evacuating inland (out of town), take pets and leave early to avoid heavy traffic, flooding and wind hazards.
  • If evacuating to a public shelter or higher location, follow police and State/Territory Emergency Services directions.
  • If going to a public shelter, take bedding needs and books or games for children.
  • Leave pets protected and with food and water.

When the hurricane strikes:

  • Disconnect all electrical appliances. Listen to your battery radio for updates.
  • Stay inside and shelter {well clear of windows) in the strongest part of the building, i.e. cellar, internal hallway or bathroom. Keep evacuation and emergency kits with you.
  • If the building starts to break up, protect yourself with mattresses, rugs or blankets under a strong table or bench or hold onto a solid fixture, e.g. a water pipe.
  • Beware the calm ‘eye’. If the wind drops, don’t assume the cyclone is over; violent winds will soon resume from another direction. Wait for the official ‘all clear’.
  • If driving, stop (handbrake on and in gear), but well away from the sea and clear of trees, power lines, and streams. Stay in the vehicle.

Even the mildest tropical storms and hurricanes can cause significant storm damage in your property. Strong winds can damage roofs and siding and even break windows, leading to additional damage from rain and floodwaters. The torrential rains can cause floods or even overwhelm wastewater systems, leading to sewage backups. The storm surge is also likely to cause water damage throughout coastal areas. Mold is likely to develop if water or sewage sits in your home for a few days. Weather is unpredictable and can cause significant storm damage to your home or business in an instant. Storms are likely to cause water damagefire damage, or sewage backups and may lead to mold damage as well.

If you need storm damage restoration, our local restoration professionals from ServiceMaster by Disaster Relief will get your life back to normal fast. They are experienced in all types of flood damage restoration, including roof leaks, flooded basements, sewage backups, and lightning fires. The licensed and insured professionals at ServiceMaster by Disaster Relief  team will even work directly with your insurance company.

Let ServiceMaster by Disaster Relief give you peace of mind in an emergency. Call us today.