Preparing for the Next Hurricane

Once a region suffers a disaster, or multiple disasters in a season, as Florida did during the 2004-2005 hurricane season, state and local officials typically rush in to say what needs to be improved and how. Actually following through on those changes is another matter entirely. The major utilities in Florida say they are ready for the upcoming 2012 hurricane season, but are they really? This question was recently asked by

The fact is, the utility companies know what needs to be done, it is just a matter of implementing the changes, with estimates saying it could take up to 30 years to complete their plan, which includes replacing older electric poles, clearing vegetation around lines, and protecting power sources for crucial infrastructure such as hospitals.

As of now, if the state of Florida were hit by multiple hurricanes, or even one big hurricane, in one season, the major utilities would be hard-pressed to recover without facing significant hurdles. Resources and their availability will also be a factor in determining how well recovery goes.

One area that has seen vast improvement is communication in the wake of a hurricane. Through such mediums as Facebook and Twitter, local utilities plan to communicate and keep its customer base up to date on the status of recovery efforts.

This is just one step of many in the efforts to improve hurricane response. There is still much to learn, as response success can never truly be tested except in real-world situations. While those in Florida hope that big storms, such as Hurricane Katrina, are few and far between, they will continue to happen. As such, planning for and responding to these events have taken disaster planning and response front and center in Florida.

For more information about disaster preparedness in Florida, visit: