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Risk in Context

First Hurricane of 2015 Atlantic Season a Reminder to Be Prepared

Posted by Robert W. O’Brien August 24, 2015

The Atlantic has awakened. Tropical Storm Danny became the first hurricane of the 2015 Atlantic season on August 20, having rapidly strengthened over a little more than 48 hours. While it reached category 3 status over the weekend, it lost much of its strength before making landfall and dropping a few inches of rain on the Leeward Islands, the US and British Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic.

While Danny fizzled out, the lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy remind us that a storm’s path and intensity can take a dramatic and potentially catastrophic turn, severely impacting your operations, directly or indirectly, and causing extensive financial harm.

You Can’t Stop a Hurricane From Hitting, But You Can Prepare

With more storms forming off the coast of Africa, there are steps you can take now to prepare for this awakening of the 2015 hurricane season:

In the event that one of these storms does make landfall with force, consider the following actions:

  • Call your broker. Your insurance advisor can support your business recovery, especially in light of any service interruption issues or property damage.
  • Carefully track and document loss details, especially for any supply chain disruptions. This will assist in the accurate measurement and presentation of claims.
  • Account for affected colleagues. Ensure that human resources policies for dealing with temporary absences are well-understood at all levels, that roles and responsibilities are covered by others as needed, and that disaster-relief and humanitarian assistance plans are activated.

Early steps and a proactive response can help you minimize damage to people and property and enable you to recover as quickly as possible.

Robert W. O’Brien

Robert O’Brien, managing director of Marsh USA, Inc. is a senior property claims officer of Marsh’s National Property Claims practice.