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Simple Steps to Help Protect Homes and Buildings during Hurricane Season

The industrial hygiene and indoor environmental quality professionals at Clark Seif Clark provide building assessments, surveys and testing services to prevent exposure hazards following storm damage.

Chatsworth, CA – WEBWIRE

Hurricanes and tropical storms cause billions of dollars in property damage every year, but some of this damage is avoidable.

Today marks the first day of hurricane season in the Caribbean and Atlantic. In the Eastern Pacific, the season began on May 15th and both continue through November 30th. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recently updated the 30-year averages for the Atlantic hurricane season, increasing it to 14 named storms, 7 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes. For the Eastern Pacific, the averages were not changed and remain at 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes and 4 major hurricanes.
To help prepare the public, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reminds everyone that hurricanes don’t only affect people living along the coast. They can cause damage many miles from shore. If a hurricane or tropical storm is on its way, CDC recommends people get their homes ready with the following suggestions:

  • Clear the yard. Make sure there’s nothing that could blow around during the storm and damage the home. Move bikes, lawn furniture, grills, propane tanks and building material inside or under shelter.
  • Cover up windows and doors. Use storm shutters or nail pieces of plywood to the outside window frames to protect windows. This can help keep people safe from pieces of shattered glass.
  • Be ready to turn off the power. If there is flooding, downed power lines or one has to leave their home, switch the power off.
  • Fill clean water containers with drinking water in case the water supply is lost during the storm. People can also fill up sinks and bathtubs with water for washing.
  • Check the carbon monoxide (CO) detector’s battery to prevent CO poisoning.

“Hurricanes and tropical storms cause billions of dollars in property damage every year, but some of this damage is avoidable.  Proactive actions by property managers and owners can go a long way towards reducing both storm-related damages and storm-related health concerns,” said Derrick A. Denis, Vice President of Indoor Environmental Quality for Clark Seif Clark (CSC). “When people return to homes and businesses to conduct damage assessments, cleanup, demolition, repair and rebuilding, it’s important to recognize damaged structures have the potential to pose health and safety risks for families, workers and building occupants. Hazards associated with mold, asbestos, electrical hazards, potable water quality, sharps, and more may be present. Return to your site with safety in mind, and consider your site may require assessment or remediation by experienced professionals.”
For example, floodwaters can contain a host of microbial and chemical contaminants.  Even clean rain water that enters a building can begin to allow for the growth of mold in as short as 48 hours. Legionella bacteria can also affect unoccupied, damaged buildings when stagnant water in pipes becomes colonized. Another health and safety concern relates to asbestos-containing materials and lead-based paints. Many properties were built before the use of lead-based paints and building materials that contained asbestos were banned. There are also federal, state and city laws and regulations that one must abide by when handling asbestos or lead.
Ready to help, with teams able to respond to all types of natural disasters, are the building science and indoor environmental quality (IEQ) experts at CSC. They provide building assessments, surveys and testing services to prevent exposure hazards following storm damage. CSC has even sponsored an educational video about preparing a home for a hurricane that can be seen at:
To learn more about this or other IEQ, industrial hygiene, health and safety issues, please visit, email or call (800) 807-1118. 
About Clark Seif Clark
CSC was established in 1989 to help clients in both public and private sectors address indoor air quality, occupational, environmental, and health and safety (EH&S) issues.  CSC is a leading provider of these services with multiple offices along the western seaboard and southwest. The company believes in science-based protocols and has a strong background in engineering, making them the preferred environmental consultants to industrial clients, healthcare facilities, architects, schools, builders, contractors, developers and real estate professionals.

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 Hurricane Season
 Hurricane Damage
 Property Damage
 Industrial Hygiene

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