Chasing Down Hurricane Ike -- Facing Down Mother Nature with Experience and a Plan

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Global Security Associates works with businesses in the Gulf Region to prepare for and recover from Hurricane Ike. Global's team of emergency responders help businesses to plan for natural disasters like hurricanes which eases the burden of recovery in the wake of such a devasting storm.

There is good news, we are seeing progress and improvements hour-by-hour. The FEMA trucks are rolling in with supplies and our job of securing facilities and assisting local businesses will continue for months.

Global Security Associates has been very busy in the Gulf Region. The 2008 Hurricane season is proving to be a carbon copy of 2005 that devastated New Orleans. Now, on the heals of Hurricane Gustav, just a few short weeks ago, Global Security Associates began preparing its health care clients in the Galveston area on crisis management techniques to face Hurricane Ike, considered a larger storm than Hurricane Katrina. A hurricane they also faced together.

Preparing companies to face natural disasters takes a great deal of organization and willingness on the part of the business and facility owners. In this case, GSA's clients in the Gulf Region have been preparing for this since the hurricane season of 2005. Did the preparation pay off? It certainly did, reports William McGuire, CEO and Founder of Global Security Associates, LLC, an international emergency response, aviation security and executive protection firm. The company's team of emergency responders rode out the storm at several area health care facilities ensuring the safety of residents and staff as well as maintaining the security of the properties. "Our primary goal is to preserve lives. In a disaster zone, a health care facility is one of the primary places people will seek out putting an enormous amount of stress on the system. It takes additional personnel with emergency response training to carry out the plan that is in place and has been practiced," explains McGuire.

One of the biggest problems for locals during a disaster, according to McGuire, is the priority of local responders who have their own families to worry about and secure. "By bringing in out of state expertise, the focus can remain on assisting in optimizing the survival of those who need to stay behind, without any distractions."

As the storm barreled towards the coast of Texas, weather experts predicted the energy of the storm would be much greater than that of Katrina, while still a category 2 storm, its Integrated Kinetic Energy was 30 percent higher than Katrina, a category 5 storm. This would have a direct impact on the storm surge that some predicted would surpass all records along the Texas coastline at heights upwards of 25 ft. While surge estimates are not perfect, many estimate the actual surge to be about 15 ft. -- the result of which has overwhelmed residents and completely destroyed properties.

Global Security Associates sent its advance teams to carry out the emergency response plan that involved moving residents who could be relocated and making preparations for staff and residents who would be remaining. "One of the facilities was only 25 miles from the eye and began to experience flooding on the first floor, we simply stuck to the plan and began moving out of the way of the surge and repositioned generators. There were no surprises, so there wasn't any panic. The key is to be ready for anything."

In the aftermath of Ike, it is clear that normalcy will be slow to return to many coastal towns in Texas. "There is good news, we are seeing progress and improvements hour-by-hour. The FEMA trucks are rolling in with supplies and our job of securing facilities and assisting local businesses will continue for months." As the infrastructure becomes more stable and basic necessities become more readily available, GSA's role will come to an end and they will return home.

About Global Security Associates:
Global Security Associates, LLC, (GSA) is recognized as a leading emergency response provider, aviation and executive protection security firm. The company provides security reviews and personnel to companies and it's executives throughout the world. Most notably known for its work with national and international airlines, with 15 locations in the US and 10 international offices; companies depend on Global for providing daily security operations, on-going security design protocols, updates and training. GSA has also been a major security supplier to government agencies, Fortune 500 companies and international clients at locations in Europe, the Caribbean, North & Central Africa, South Africa, South America, Mexico, Asia and the Middle East including Saudi Arabia, Lebanon and Jordan.

William McGuire, president and CEO of the company, has spent nearly two decades in the security industry. McGuire is a strategic partner with the International Air Transport Association (IATA) as well as an active member of the American Society of Industrial Security (ASIS), the National Cargo Security Council (NCSC), and the International Association for Counter-terrorism & Security Professionals.


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William McGuire