IBHS Cautions Inland Residents to Prepare for Possible Effects of Tropical Storm Isaac

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Take steps now, before the storm arrives, to lower the risk of severe damage.

High-wind testing at the IBHS Research Center demonstrates the value of stronger construction techniques used in IBHS' FORTIFIED house

High winds and strong, wind-driven rain can travel hundreds of miles inland, causing significant damage and flooding.

As Isaac continues to pummel the Gulf Coast, difficult lessons from past hurricanes highlight the importance and significant benefits of preparation by inland residents against high winds and flooding, warns the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS).

“History repeatedly has shown that hurricanes are not just coastal events,” said Julie Rochman, IBHS president and CEO. “Storms don’t stop when they get to a state line or an interstate. Mother Nature keeps going. High winds and strong, wind-driven rain can travel hundreds of miles inland, causing significant damage and flooding.”

In August 2011, Hurricane Irene caused major flooding in several states, including Vermont and Pennsylvania. In 2008, Hurricane Ike made landfall on the Gulf Coast of Texas and moved thousands of miles inland to Ohio, where the storm caused more than $1.5 billion in property damage – making it the largest single loss event in the state’s history.

“Unfortunately,” notes Rochman, “buildings further inland generally are not specifically designed and built to withstand high winds. This makes them more vulnerable to damage, so there is a lot of room to improve their performance. ”

Testing at the IBHS Research Center demonstrates the damage severe wind storms and wind-driven rain can cause to a home or business. IBHS test results are translated into property protection resources that empower home and business owners to take some control over the risks they face.

“Reducing potential damage starts with preparation,” Rochman said. “You cannot move your home or business out of harm’s way but you can and should take steps now, before the storm arrives, to lower the risk of severe damage.”

IBHS offers the following resources to prepare properties in coastal and inland areas:

  •     Disaster Planning App – Know Your Plan
  •     Prepare Surroundings and Trees
  •     Shutter Windows and Doors
  •     Prepare for Flooding
  •     Prepare Generators
  •     Business Preparation Resources

IBHS is a leading national expert on preparing for, and repairing and rebuilding structures after a catastrophe to make them more disaster-resistant. To arrange an interview with IBHS, contact Joseph King at 813-675-1045/813-442-2845, jking(at)ibhs(dot)org or via direct message on Twitter @jsalking.

Visit DisasterSafety.org for more information about how to make your buildings more resistant to a variety of disasters, big and small. Follow IBHS on Twitter at @DisasterSafety and on Facebook.

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About the IBHS
IBHS is an independent, nonprofit, scientific research and communications organization supported by the property insurance industry. The organization works to reduce the social and economic effects of natural disasters and other risks on residential and commercial property by conducting building science research and advocating improved construction, maintenance and preparedness practices.

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