Saturday, September 3, 2016

Hurricane Hermine

Not actually Erin.
& is used with permission.
A big "Thank You!" to everyone asking me if I am safe, warm, and/or dry as a result of  Hurricane Hermine.

I am fine. Hermine hit the Gulf Coast; I'm Atlantic Coast. It was angled northeast and so the outer bands were to the north of us; we got some rain and a bit of wind, but the storm was a complete non-event for me.

Tallahassee seems to have taken the worst of it, with some flooding and many people (100,000 to 250,000) without power due to trees knocking down power lines. So far as I know, only one person was killed by the storm, and that's because he was living in a homeless camp in the woods and the wind blew a tree down onto him. This advantage of "better shelter through better construction" is why storms in the Caribbean almost always do more damage and kill more people than they do here.

I don't mean to sound callous when talking about death, property damage, and loss of power, but if I'm being completely honest, the damage incurred by Hermine isn't a big deal at all.
  • Yes, I'm sure being without power after a storm is inconvenient, but the reality here is that we Floridians (or at least, I) expect to lose power for up to 72 hours after a storm. 
  • Yes, there is flooding that caused damage, but that's what happens when you live on the coast: you either pay your flood insurance or you move further inland. (This is why I don't live on the beach, by the way. I'm 8.5 miles inland. If any storm surge reaches that far, I have bigger problems to deal with.)
  • Heck, I've seen lightning set the forest behind my house on fire, and last year in August it rained so much (and not from a hurricane or tropical storm, either) that Tampa's sewers backed up and the city flooded.

All of this is just part a parcel of living in Florida, and prepping in the form of "Hurricane Supplies" is just a way of life.

Storms happen. Tornadoes happen. I don't want to sound like a badass arrogant Floridian, but you either accept this as part of the risk of living here or you move... and you accept other weather risks, like blizzards and ice storms.

Hurricane Katrina was a storm. This was just bad weather.

That said, despite my claims that "Floridians don't even get out of bed for a Category 1 storm," Hurricanes are no joke and need to be taken seriously. If you are prepared for them, like I am, then you can rest easily and make jokes.. but don't joke until you're prepared, and be ready to leave (and leave early) if the storm increases.

For more information, check out our articles with the Hurricane tag, especially my 2014 three-part series. 

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