Storm Chaser’s Photos of Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne Pay Tribute to Historic Hurricane Season

Columbia, SC (PRWEB) November 19, 2004

Extreme weather photographer Jim Reed considers himself lucky to be alive after surviving the power of all four Florida hurricanes. Reed, a professional storm chaser, drove his 10 year-old Ford Explorer into the eye of Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne to document the unprecedented cyclones. The images he captured, both photos and video, went live on the Internet this week at


Protect Your Home from Hurricanes

Clearwater, FL (PRWEB) September 7, 2006

With power returning to the Southeast after a blackout caused by Ernesto and Tropical Storm Florence picking up speed in the Atlantic, coastal residents are once again thinking about protecting their homes from wind and water.

Homeowners often scramble to board up windows and lay sandbags just hours before a storm hits. However, there are more elaborate and permanent measures, which offer better protection for home and property.

“Consider retrofitting your home against hurricane damage,” says Diana Fink, who has 35 years of experience in the insurance adjusting industry. “This can be an expensive project, but you can do it in stages and insurance companies may offer discounts to help offset the costs.”

Retrofitting means making permanent changes to an existing building, to protect it from hazards like flooding and wind.

“It’s important to strengthen your home so wind and debris don’t tear large openings in it,” says Diana Fink, who founded Central Insurance School almost 20 years ago.

Fink recommends protecting and reinforcing four critical areas of the home: roof, windows, doors and garage doors. These areas are vital because wind can suck a roof off during a storm. Broken items such as windows, doors, or garage doors can contribute greatly to the likelihood that this will happen.

Current codes require new homes to tie roofs tightly to walls. However, existing homes may not have been built with the same knowledge.

“The best time to start securing, or retrofitting, your home is when you’re making other renovations and repairs before hurricane season even begins,” says Fink.

In some cases, grants may be available to help homeowners pay for retrofitting. For example, the State of Florida set aside 242.5 million dollars, to provide homeowners with free home inspections and matching grants for specific improvements on qualified homes.

The monies provide up to $ 5,000 in matching grants to homeowners who need to upgrade roofs, decks, hurricane shutters and other items.

Still, the cheapest and easiest way to make a home hurricane resistant is to invest in extra hurricane straps and bracing while the home is being built.

Remember, when a hurricane watch is issued it may already be too late to take certain precautions.

To locate a public adjuster for a home-inspection, please contact Central Insurance School by phone at 800-571-2003 or online at


Hurricanes Blow in the Mold: Are Roofs Ready for Hurricane Season?

Orlando, FL (PRWEB) May 16, 2006 -–

Last year’s hurricane season left many houses and buildings in rubble and caused many more to be shut down from increased levels of mold growing inside. Unfortunately, even after extensive repairs, many of these buildings will face the same moisture and mold problems again this year.

Most of the water-vulnerable areas on a house or building are located on its roof. Taking a proactive approach to guard against wind-driven rain in the seven areas on a roof and exterior of a house will help reduce the amount of excess water and moisture allowed in during the upcoming hurricane and rainy season.

“Good House” expert Matt Shipley suggests leak guarding all areas on the exterior of your house. By reducing the number of areas that water has to gain access to a house, the chances of creating an environment friendly to mold significantly decreases.

“Although every house has mold spores, they need the right conditions in order to thrive,” said Shipley. “Mold requires a food source, the right temperature and moisture in order to grow into catastrophic proportions that put insurance and homebuilding companies out of business and drive homeowners from their homes.”

The seven most vulnerable areas on the exterior include: