The North Carolina Department of Transportation estimates that 6,000 to 12,000 trucks drive along the I-95 corridor on any given day. When a hurricane closes part of this major logistics route, as it did in October 2016, truck drivers get halted for an indefinite amount of time. Loads are rerouted and the need for supplies becomes even greater.
According to Geology.Com, “The Great Galveston Hurricane of 1900 was the deadliest hurricane to ever hit the United States and caused between 8000 and 12000 deaths. The storm reached the Texas coast south of Galveston on September 8 as a Category 4 hurricane with a storm surge of 8 to 15 feet. The lack of warning and the high storm surge caused this storm to have the highest death toll of any United States hurricane.”
In the last two decades, the United States has seen a continual surge in hurricane activity. Some of those include Hurricane Ike, Hurricane Rita, and Hurricane Ivan. According to Accuweather.Com, hurricane season in the Atlantic runs from June 1 to November 30. The Eastern Pacific basin’s hurricane season is from May 15-November 30. In the Western Pacific, hurricane season is July 1 through November 30. In the South Pacific, it is October 15 to May 15 and in the Indian Ocean hurricane season extends April 1 to December 31.
The National Hurricane Center lists five major types of hurricanes. They run from a category 1 to a category 5, with categories 4 and 5 considered major storms. A category five can have winds of 157 miles per hour or higher. It is a common misconception, however, that a lower category hurricane is not as dangerous as a higher category hurricane. As reported online, a category three can cause as much damage or more than a hurricane five. Geology.Com states, “Hurricane Katrina was the costliest hurricane in United States history, and it was only a Category 3 hurricane when it made landfall.”
Online safety brochures offer a variety of advice including this tip: If a hurricane watch is issued, know that hurricane conditions exist for the next 48 hours. Other helpful notations include the following:
1.) More residents are likely to be on the roads in an evacuation. Be careful and patient while traveling.
2.) Be alert to crosswinds that can make a light load tip and try to avoid hydroplaning.
3.) Texting is also a great way to communicate instead of phone calls, as they use less bandwidth and are less likely to overload a cellular system.
4.) As noted in online resources, loss of life from a hurricane is usually caused by storm surge and flooding instead of high winds. Never underestimate a lower category hurricane, as none of the top deadliest hurricanes in the United States were ever a Category 5 at landfall.
Online sources estimate $1.5 billion dollars in damage was done by the October 2016 hurricanes across North Carolina, where many major logistics routes will continue to be under repair in the months ahead. As truck drivers, it is important to be prepared. Having an evacuation route, a disaster kit, and being alert can make all the difference.
About Millis Transfer
Millis Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information, please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.