Take action in advance. Have a plan for recovery.
Every hurricane is unique. Size and intensity both contribute to the level of damage a hurricane can cause. Hurricanes Irma, and Maria battered many properties and communities last Fall. Even if the eye did not directly pass over you, the damage was still severe on the dirty side of the storm. Since hurricane season runs from June 1st to November 30th with the heart of the season being from mid-August thru October 31s, , you’ve still got time to execute a preparedness plan. If a hurricane threatens the Miami or Ft. Lauderdale area, preparing your property in advance can help reduce potential damage and reduce your recovery costs.
Even if you’ve been dragging your feet and ignored all previous advice to prepare in advance, there is still time to prepare! Use the list below as a guide to help address important items to help develop a customized emergency preparedness plan for your business, commercial property, apartment or condominium association.
- Check Your Contact Information: Update the contact list of your employees, tenants, regular service providers, and general contractors. Remember, many people travel over the summer, so know vacation schedules and have a backup plan if your employees or tenants are out of town. Know where your tenants and owners are so you can reach them should the need arise.
- Verify Insurance Coverage: Review your property insurance coverage with your insurance agent and be knowledgeable of what is covered and what is not covered. Keep your policies in a safe and water tight place.
- Emergency Supplies: Purchase emergency supplies such as industrial grade plastic sheeting, duct tape, sandbags, a chain saw, large pieces of plywood, shovels, large lawn size garbage bags, batteries and an emergency generator if possible. Purchase other essential items that are necessary to putting your property and/or business back into action after a storm.
- Take Photos: Make a video or take photos of your property, buildings and/or business from many different vantage points. Include the parking lot and the front of your property. This will help document and substantiate any insurance claim if necessary.
- Cell Phones: Make certain your phones are fully charged before a potential loss of electricity. Equip yourselves, family members and essential employees with separate battery packs to charge cell phones after a power outage. Operate the phones on low battery mode when possible to conserve battery life.
- Survey the Exterior of your Property:
- Remove any loose objects from the roof.
- Bring in any items that are typically left outside including displays, tables, chairs, flower pots, trash cans or anything that can cause damage in flight.
- If your property has exterior glass frontage, board up any unprotected glass with plywood or shutters.
- For residential communities with balconies, residents should be instructed to bring all patio furniture and contents inside.
- Parking lots should be surveyed. if time permits, trees should be trimmed, catch basins should be cleaned, dumpsters should be emptied and any loose parking lot signage should be secured or repaired.
- Don’t Forget About the Computer and your Electronic Files: Back up all computer files remotely or on the cloud if possible.
- Monitor Communication: As the storm approaches, be certain to monitor a local radio or television station for official emergency information and instructions issued by the National Hurricane Center and/or local emergency personnel. Use these helpful links: nhc.noaa.gov OR wunderground.com.
After the Storm… plan for recovery
Once the storm has passed, contact your tenants and essential personnel. Once it is safe to venture outside, you should:
- Survey the exterior of your property.
- Report downed power lines or suspected gas leaks.
- Protect your property. Take whatever reasonable steps are required to prevent your property from further damage such as boarding up windows and covering leaking roofs.
- Contact your insurance agent and report any loss as soon as possible.
- Start cleaning up! Prioritize what needs to be done first to get your shopping center, commercial property, apartment or condominium association up and running and back in business quickly. Contact your service providers and general contractors to clear the parking lot of debris, help open the roadways and clear fallen vegetation to support traffic flow to your parking lot and your tenants or residents.
- Begin repairs and build stronger. Contact your local general contractor to make necessary repairs and add reinforcements to your building so the structure is stronger than before the storm.
We are here to help. When an event threatens the Miami or Ft. Lauderdale area, contact M.A. Construction Group to help get your business or commercial property prepared for a hurricane including board ups. Once the storm passes, we can assist you with parking lot debris removal and property clean up to get your commercial property, shopping center or residential community back on their feet as quickly as possible.
M.A. Construction Group is a full-service asphalt paving contractor serving Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Orlando and South and Central Florida. We offer asphalt paving and parking lot services such as pot hole repairs, parking lot maintenance, parking lot sealcoating and striping, concrete ramps and sidewalks, car stops, signage, catch basins, bollard poles and ADA compliance.