Time for a Disaster Plan Audit?
10 Questions to Help You Decide ...
September 2001Worst Hurricanes in a Century.
Many scientists are now predicting that the Caribbean and entire East Coast of the United States - from Florida to New England - could be in for more and bigger hurricanes. They may be the worst in a century, and the onslaught is likely to continue for years, perhaps decades, to come, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami.
According to articles just published in the Journal of Science, the Atlantic water breeding grounds for hurricanes likely to hit the East Coast and the Caribbean have been warming up, and wind shear has been decreasing. And it only takes a half degree of warmer temperature to make a big difference in fueling these massive storms, according to Stanley B. Goldenberg, who heads National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Hurricane Research Division.
The NOAA scientists say that slight climate shifts, like those now being documented, are normal, periodic events due to a natural ocean cycle between warm and cool phases of the North Atlantic and Caribbean sea surfaces that last 25 to 40 years each.
Same Cycles that Brought the 1900 Galveston and 1938 NYC Hurricanes.
The great Galveston Hurricane hit when these same conditions occured, in 1900. From that point until the 1920s, the tropics quieted. Then they turned active again from the '20s until the '60s, during which New York was hit by the 1938 Yankee Clipper Hurricane. Florida and the Carolinas were hit repeatedly. The most powerful to ever strike the United States hit the Florida Keys in 1935. And then things started warming up again as Hurricane Andrew struck in 1992, bringing unprecedented economic devastation - in the neighborhood of $25 billion in the United States alone - along a path through the northwestern Bahamas, the southern Florida peninsula, and south central Louisiana. But the scientists say this is a normal cycling. Why it happens is not understood. But because it's a cycle, they don't believe this current event is related to global warming.
New Major Cycle is Under Way.
"From 1995 to 2000 we saw the highest level of North Atlantic hurricane activity ever measured," Goldenberg said. "Compared with the previous 24 years, there were twice as many hurricanes in the Atlantic, including two and a half times more major hurricanes - those reaching Category 3 strength with winds reaching more than 110 mph - and more than five times as many hurricanes impacting the Caribbean islands."
Hurricane season began June 1, though the strongest storms tend to form later in the summer and early fall, when the sea, which provides them energy, has warmed. Disaster experts worry that coastal residents have been lulled into a false sense of security by recent quiet years. Also increasing the danger is the fact that the number of people living in coastal areas has skyrocketed in recent years, and that evacuating masses of people in advance of a storm can be chaotic and sometimes dangerous.
Take These Steps Now!
It is always wise to prepare for disaster - but when a series of record hurricane seasons are expected, it is sheer folly to ignore the warnings. According to Julie Rider, JMBM partner focused on disaster preparedness, "NOW is the time to check your disaster checklist, designate your Disaster Team, check your insurance coverage and rehearse your disaster plan."
If you answered no to three or more questions, or no to either question 1 or 2, you are in dire need of a Disaster Plan Audit. Contact Julia Rider at (310) 201-3527 or email@example.com.
Julia Rider provides JMBM's Global Hospitality Group clients with a broad range of litigation assistance, including disaster audits and preparedness. She has extensive experience representing hospitality clients in disputes arising from major disasters, including insurance claims. Contact Julia to help with your disaster-related issues at (310) 201-3527 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Global Hospitality Group(r) is a registered servicemark of Jeffer, Mangels, Butler & Marmaro LLP
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|Also See:||When is an Apartment a Hotel ... and Who Cares? / The Global Hospitality Advisor / JMBM / September 2001|
|Richard Kessler's Grand Theme Hotels - Interview with GHG Chairman Jim Butler / March 2001|
|Stephen Rushmore's Industry Trends / Top Markets, Predictions & Opportunities / Jan 2001|
|Outlook 2001: A Roundtable Discussion The Global Hospitality Advisor / Jan 2001|
|Perspectives on Hotel Financing in 2001; Jim Butler, JMBM's Global Hospitality Group Chairman, Interviews Two Active Players in Hotel Finance / Jan 2001|
|Robert J. Morse: Millenniumís New President / Interview with GHG Chairman Jim Butler / Nov 2000|
|Special Reports / Jeffer, Mangels, Butler & Marmaro LLP|