Hurricane Hermine has come and gone, leaving it's path in hurricane history with minimal damages. When I say minimal, I only mean in comparison to particular storms of the past. Maybe you, personally, can relate to the ones that are mentioned below.
Being that we are a roofing contractor, our ears, eyes and attention are glued to what each storm is threatening to do until what does actually happens. Over the years and several storms later, we have learned to be better prepared to accommodate and be available to both our staff and current customers for any storm-related emergencies. That is our utmost priority and a huge advantage over homeowners who have not established a relationship with a local contractor.
Within the company, especially during the hurricane season, it is common to hear the staff reminisce about experiences during past storms.
Probably some of the worst chatter of 21st century storms, in this area anyway, is when Hurricane Isabel made landfall with winds of 105 mph on September 18, 2003. The aftermath of its vengeance left 1.8 million people without power, 9,000 homes damaged and overall $1.9 billion dollars in total damages, not including economic losses. Many families without power for 2-3 weeks, if not longer, were forced to endure the unusually thick humid air for September in Hampton Roads.
The Roofing Company staff working during the Isabel disaster, was that of unexpected chaos. More calls than possibly imaginable were flowing in due to damages and had to be routed through an answering service. The answer service took the calls and The Roofing Company got back to as many people as possible. Estimator schedules were jam packed with appointments for weeks at 12 hours per day Monday through Saturday. We did the best we could but being a much smaller company then, we were limited to what we could handle at that time.
Then three years later, Tropical Storm Ernesto hit on August 29, 2006. Fortunately, due to tremendous growth, The Roofing Company had just moved to a new and bigger location in Hampton that February, so we were much more prepared to handle our staff and customer needs. Still, tensions were lifted since this "storm" was going to blow through and it wasn't looking pretty due to the amount of rain prior and picking up momentum once it landed in North Carolina. We were on pins and needles, but due to careful planning and new systems in place after Isabel, we were better prepared. Several of the office staff who hadn't before then answered incoming calls, got the crash course of how it's done. Just in the first week of the storm, call volume increased 5 times the average amount. Let's just say, who went in as a rookie, came out as a pro!
A month after the storm we had booked 10 times more than the average number of appointments. Ernesto estimated $188 million in total damages without including economic losses.
Once again, after Ernesto, the company team gathered and discussed how, with the next storm, we can be even better! In 2008 Hurricane Hanna was coming full force up the East Coast. There was so much hype about Hanna; businesses and schools closed and cancellations reported left and right. The Roofing Company was more prepared than ever, holding a mandatory company briefing to discuss the call roster order, to FIRST, make sure all staff were safe and if anyone needed emergency repairs and SECOND, everyone's specific role after the storm to handle customer emergencies and other incoming calls.
Well, good preparation never hurt anything. Ending on a light note, Hanna's effect on Hampton Roads says it all in this picture.