Disaster Discourse: The Hagerty Blog

Hurricane Florence Headlines Four Disturbances to Watch This Week

According to the NOAA’s National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Florence is expected to strengthen to a major hurricane by Monday – with landfall likely later this week as a Category 4 or 5 storm on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. This is a potentially life-threatening event.  All those in its still-uncertain path should take immediate measures to prepare.

Image: NOAA National Hurricane Center Forecast Cone as of 9/09/18 at 11:00 am AST

Most models indicate that Florence will make landfall in South Carolina, North Carolina, or Virginia.  Governors of all three states have already issued states of emergency to free up resources in anticipation of its impact.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA’s) National Hurricane Center (NHC) forecasts dangerous conditions due to two main factors:

  1. Storm surge at the coast and high winds wherever Florence makes landfall; and
  2. Inland flooding due to the potential that Florence stalls for days after making landfall.

It is important to understand that risks from Florence are not limited to the location in which it makes landfall.  The entire southeast and mid-Atlantic could experience significant flooding because a high-pressure system north of Florence could allow it to slow down upon arrival, with the potential for prolonged rainfall hundreds of miles inland.

We at Hagerty strongly suggest that everyone along the eastern seaboard keep an eye on this storm – and begin preparing accordingly.

Additional Storms

In addition, two tropical storms in the Atlantic Basin are hot on the heels of Florence: Isaac and Helene.  While there is no imminent threat, their mere existence may portend an increasingly active September in the Atlantic.

Image: NOAA National Hurricane Center Atlantic Tropical Cyclones and Disturbances as of 9/09/18 at 1:33 pm EDT

Finally, in the Pacific, Hurricane Olivia is projected to hit Hawaii by Wednesday, albeit as a weaker tropical storm.

Image: NOAA Central Pacific Hurricane Center Forecast Cone as of 9/09/18 at 5:00 am HST

Hagerty will continue to monitor these situations. Please stay tuned to Disaster Discourse this coming week, when we will post more fulsome updates and helpful ways to prepare.

Below is a list of information resources to be prepared for hurricanes and hazardous weather:

Hagerty Consulting is an emergency management consulting firm that helps clients prepare for and recover from disasters. Established in 2001, Hagerty’s work includes some of the nation’s largest recovery and preparedness projects in more than 30 states, including 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, and Hurricane Sandy. The firm is (and has been) consistently recognized throughout the industry for its innovative thinking, client-centric service, and the superior results it delivers to every project. Hagerty professionals reside in all 10 FEMA regions; the firm’s offices are in Evanston, Illinois (corporate headquarters); Austin, Texas; and Washington, D.C. Learn more about how our Recovery and Preparedness Divisions can help you this hurricane season.