Using single- or double-pane windows
reduces the chances of fracturing.
Today’s technology allows forecasters to
identify hurricanes at their earliest inception — usually when they are halfway
around the globe. You don’t need to be a
weather expert, but it’s smart to be familiar with storm terminology so you know
when it’s time to gear up your resources
for a hurricane or other weather event.
It is important to be familiar with hurricane terminology:
Tropical Storm — A low-pressure,
tropical system with winds near the center between 39 and 73 mph.
Hurricane — A hurricane has sustained winds near the center of a tropical
storm that reach 74 mph.
Watch — Means conditions are
possible. Occurs within 36 hours of a hurricane or tropical storm.
Warning — When a hurricane or tropical storm is expected in a specified area
within 24 hours.
Eye — The center of a hurricane with
the strongest winds and heaviest rains.
Storm Surge — The onshore push
of ocean water from high winds that
Tornadoes are categorized according to
the Fujita Tornado Intensity Scale. The
categories can cause everything from
light damage from high winds to major
devastation. Here is a short description of
each category from the NOAA:
Category F0 — Gale tornado with
wind speeds of 40-74 mph. These usually
cause light damage such as breaking tree
branches, blowing sign boards and may
damage some chimneys.
Category F1 — With wind speeds of
73-112 mph, a moderate tornado is ca-
pable of pulling the surface off of roofs,
pushing mobile homes off of their founda-
tions and forcing vehicles off of the road.
Category F2 — Tornadoes in this category have winds clocked at 113-157 mph
and are considered significant. They can
cause considerable damage like demolishing mobile homes, push over boxcars
on trains, snap or uproot large trees and
make any light object into a dangerous
Category F3 — Severe tornadoes with
158-206 mph winds fall into this category
and are capable of tearing off roofs and
walls, overturning trains and lifting heavy
cars off of the ground.
Category F4 — At 207-260 mph, these
winds cause devastating damage. Well-constructed homes can be leveled and
structures with a weak foundation can be
blown off some distance.
Category F5 — This is almost a Wizard of Oz-size storm with winds at 260-
318 mph, capable of incredible damage
such as carrying homes a considerable
distance before they are disintegrated.
Automobiles can become dangerous missiles and the bark can literally be blown
off of trees.
Insurance Auto Auctions shares five lessons their company learned from responding to catastrophes:
1. Coordinate with local authorities and
value their crisis response process.
2. Review your catastrophe plans and
make sure they are up to date.
3. Closely monitor severe weather.
4. Work with first responders and other
stakeholders ahead of time to formulate emergency plans.
5. Time management is critical — especially after a severe CAT. Maximize
your resources with proper planning.
Effective catastrophe plans anticipate
the worse and cover a variety of scenarios. Since insurers are often the first line
of defense when a catastrophe strikes, this
is one area where policyholders can learn
from the experts to effectively manage
Since insurers are often
the first line of defense
when a catastrophe strikes,
this is one area where
policyholders can learn from
the experts to effectively
manage their risks.