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Hurricane Harvey and How You Can Help By Karen Kazmierczak

 


Hurricane Harvey and How You Can Help

August 31, 2017 | Karen Kazmierczak

Hurricane Harvey reached hurricane strength in the Gulf of Mexico on Thursday, August 24, 2017. By Friday when it made landfall near Port Aransas and Corpus Christi, it had intensified to a Category 4 hurricane, bringing sustained winds of 130 miles per hour and heavy rain. Due to a unique confluence of events, Harvey then stalled out, slowly shifting around the Texas Gulf Coast for several days. At this time, Tropical Depression Harvey is over central Louisiana and continuing to bring severe weather to the area.

Harvey’s unique lack of movement led to unprecedented rains in Houston and surrounding areas, dropping at or close to a year’s worth of rainfall in a matter of days. The record-breaking flooding has led to catastrophic damage, destroying 30,000 to 40,000 homes and resulting in at least 38 reported deaths

As property managers, events like this remind us of the importance of making sure you and your properties are prepared for potential natural disasters. For some resources on this topic, download the Floods, Droughts, and Landslides chapter (PDF) of the IREM publication Before and After Disaster Strikes, and view the IREM checklist What to Do After a Flood.

Additionally, you may help Hurricane Harvey victims now by donating to any number of charitable organizations that are assisting the rescue and cleanup efforts. If you are able to help, please consider the following organizations:

 

Remember that Harvey is affecting areas outside of Houston and Texas; don’t forget the smaller communities in Texas and Louisiana that will need assistance now and in coming months.

Also, please note that FEMA will be making housing vouchers available to those who are displaced. Anyone affected should contact John Carleton (202-870-4486) or Blair McDonald (972-795-5795), who are leading the housing assistance planning effort at FEMA. More detailed information can also be found here.

About the Author
Karen Kazmierczak is the Digital Strategist at IREM headquarters. She oversees IREM's digital communications and marketing, including the website, social media, and blog.