Hurricane season started officially last week, and some reports have as many as eight striking the U.S. in different geographic regions. This has companies in high-impact areas on alert for the major storms.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, there will be anywhere between ten and 16 named storms, four to eight of which will be considered hurricanes. One to four of those hurricanes are predicted to be category three or higher.
Where will they hit? Officials at the Weather Research Center (WRC), which predicts where hurricanes will touch down, say it will likely be two of the largest U.S. states.
“The west coast of Florida, and Texas coastal areas, have the highest risk of being impacted this year,” says Jill Hasling, president.
The center says West Florida has a 70 percent chance of being struck with a hurricane, while Texas sits at 60 percent.
In the coastal city of Corpus Christi, Texas, Manuel Chavarria, owner of Alpha Omega Siding Windows and Doors, says hurricane windows are a mainstay year-round.
“The thing about the hurricane windows is its year-round energy efficiency,” he explains. “Then when the storm comes, our customers don’t have to worry about boarding up.”
He says he sees a bit of an uptick in orders during hurricane season, but most people already recognize their need for the product.
Jennifer Holcomb, vice president at Gulf Coast Windows and Doors in Fort Meyers, Fla., says that while her company sees an increase in calls before and during hurricane season, there’s not much they can do for last-minute customers.
“Everything is made to order, we don’t have inventory,” she explains. “Our lead times are 120 days out.”
It’s good to educate customers on the importance of impact-resistant windows year-round, Holcomb says. “The general public needs to be aware that we can’t get windows out and installed in a week.”
As for overall predictions, WRC has some similar to NOAA regarding overall storm activity.
“We’re predicting seven to 10 named tropical cyclones forming in the Atlantic this hurricane season, with four of these intensifying into hurricanes,” says Hasling. “Given this forecast, now is the time for homeowners and business owners to evaluate the condition of their properties and take the necessary steps to prepare for severe weather.”