HurricaneNatural disasters have stayed in the headlines this year with blizzards crippling the East Coast, a magnitude 6.3 earthquake in New Zealand and a magnitude 9.0 earthquake off the coast of Japan, severe flooding in Australia and the Mississippi River in the US, and dozens of tornadoes devastating the South. These significant weather events occur every year and according to Bimal Paul, professor of geography at Kansas State University, they will increase in frequency and severity over the next 20+ years.

With hurricane season starting on June 1st, now is the time to start preparing your business for the worst. The Colorado State University forecast team has predicted that the 2011 Atlantic hurricane season will be above average with 16 named tropical storms and 9 hurricanes in the Atlantic basin; 5 of which are expected to develop into major hurricanes of Category 3 or higher. In 2011, there is a predicted 72% chance that at least one major hurricane will make landfall on the US coastline.

Companies with staff along the Eastern and Gulf coasts of the Atlantic need to prepare for the risks associated with these storms. Negative impacts to business operations can include mass power outages, property damage and potential harm to employees. Being prepared allows managers to focus on running the business instead of trying to get back up and running after a natural disaster.

What preparations is your company making to ensure the effects of a possible hurricane are minimal?

For more information, including tips on evacuating, sheltering-in-place and what to do after a hurricane download the Preparis Hurricane Checklist (PDF).

Photo credit: pennstatelive

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