Every year, hurricanes pose a substantial threat to many areas of the United States and around the world. The effects of a significant hurricane can be devastating. One prominent example is Hurricane Katrina in 2005, a catastrophic storm that was responsible for over 900 deaths in just Louisiana and at least $160 billion in property damage. More recently, Hurricane Harvey rocked southeast Texas and Louisiana in 2017, resulting in at least 80 deaths and damage totaling more than $125 billion.
If you operate a construction business in a hurricane zone, a powerful storm can decimate your job sites and wreck your heavy equipment. While preparing for hurricane season won't prevent a catastrophic event from happening, it can mitigate the damage and even save lives.
Follow These Tips for Total Preparedness
The following tips for handling construction jobs in hurricane season can help you get ready for a worst-case scenario:
- Gather materials: Stock up on essential supplies now while things are calm — don't wait until there's a mad rush at the store. A partial list of what you'll need includes ground anchors, duct tape, rope, sandbags, portable generators and fuel, plywood, plastic sheeting and wire.
- Secure equipment and structures: When you receive news that a hurricane is imminent, it's time to get ready. Use your rope, ground anchors and other supplies to secure items that could blow away. Place sheeting over piles of materials to prevent water damage. If time permits, complete work on unfinished structures or board them up with plywood. In anticipation of flooding, place portable pumps in basements and excavation areas.
- Remove what you can: Remove as many items from your job sites as possible. Examples include construction site dumpsters, portable bathrooms, tools, electronics, hazardous chemicals and documents. Transport your heavy equipment, such as backhoes, excavators, bulldozers and wheel loaders, to a covered garage or shed for safe storage.
- Evacuate the site: You should develop a site-specific evacuation plan to determine the safest, most efficient way for your crews to leave. Monitor the forecast and heed the warnings to know when it's the right time to exit the premises.
- After the storm: When the hurricane passes and it's safe to return to the site, you'll need to conduct a comprehensive damage assessment. If flooding occurred, activate your pumps as soon as possible. Standing water softens the ground and may compromise the stability of your structures.
Where to Rent Pumps and Other Essential Equipment
If you're looking for portable pumps or heavy equipment such as bulldozers or excavators to assist with hurricane cleanup, The Cat® Rental Store near you has what you need. We carry a huge assortment of machines and tools from Caterpillar and more than 70 other top manufacturers. You'll get a competitive rate and excellent service to maximize your customer experience.
Give The Cat Rental Store a call at 1-800-RENT-CAT today to receive more helpful tips for preparing for hurricane season or learn more about our equipment for rent. You can also contact us online to get a fast, no-obligation quote.
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