Hurricane Michael Relief Effort
On October 2nd of 2018 the National Hurricane Center recognized a low pressure system that was beginning to form in the Caribbean Sea near the Yucatan Peninsula. This low pressure system slowly grew as it passed through the Yucatan Channel and into the Gulf of Mexico. While on its path of destruction the thirteenth storm of the 2018 season, Hurricane Michael, clipped the island of Cuba, and set multiple records while becoming the most intense hurricane to make American landfall since Hurricane Camille (1969).
ServiceMaster DSI was prepared for the hurricanes arrival days before it made landfall. Our SRM team had resources spread across the Florida panhandle and were on site in Panama beach when the storm hit the coast. On October 7th, Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for part of the state and asked the US government announce their own Emergency Disaster Declaration. University campuses and coastal towns evacuated in preparation for Michael’s impending destruction.
On October 10th, Michael made landfall on the Florida panhandle as a powerful Category 4 hurricane. Shortly there after it entered Georgia as a Category 3 hurricane and became the first major hurricane to impact the state since 1898. After passing through Georgia, Michael entered South and North Carolina and dumped rain on many of the same counties that had been affected by Hurricane Florence just a month prior. The conditions from the initial low pressure system allowed the air pressure of the hurricane to dip as low as 919 mbar and generate sustained wind speeds of 155 mph.
Hurricane Michael took out a handful of cell towers in the panhandle causing more widespread panic when loved ones could not contact each other. Luckily, ServiceMaster DSI’s SRM team came prepared with two-way radios to communicate between crews and the mobile command centers. These two way radios were critical to ServiceMaster DSI’s successful handling of 40 commercial locations in a dozen Florida and Georgia cities. Our crews went in right away to begin the water mitigation process. Water extractors and power generators were brought in to aid in restoring peace of mind to the affected communities.
By the end of October the death toll had rose to 60 and the estimated damage had exceeded $15 billion. At the high point of the storms damage an estimated 1.2 million customers were without power across several states in the storms path. The Tyndall Air Force Base located just outside Panama City, Florida was hit particularly hard. Hangers suffered severe roof damage but most notably multiple F-22 Raptor fighter jets were severely damaged.
ServiceMaster DSI offers pre-loss planning for commercial buildings that want to be prepared in case a disaster strikes and their property is damaged. Give ServiceMaster DSI a call today at our emergency hotline number: 1(844) 413-3130 or request a form online for more information so you are prepared.