Archive for the ‘Insurance Issues’ Category

Storm Catcher Hurricane Screens Now Have An HVHZ Approval

Friday, December 11th, 2009

Last year, Storm Smart Industries began the testing process to gain an HVHZ approval for its Storm Catcher hurricane and storm screen products. We tested these products at the Fenestration Testing Lab in Miami. We are proud to announce to you that the products passed wtih flying colors and we now have a HVHZ approval. The new FL number is 13227. During this round of testing we tested some new products as well as our strap and buckle and grommet screens.

What this means is that we’ll be able to use our products in the HVHZ zones, as well as in non-HVHZ zones where only HVHZ products are speced in. This is exciting news and we believe all of our dealers will benefit from this greatly. We will announce more about this soon, so stay tuned to our website and newsletters for more information.

Early Hurricane Forecast Indicates an Active Season in 2010

Friday, December 11th, 2009

Below is a copy of a an initial forecast made by Dr. William Gray and Dr. Phillip Klotzbach of Colorado State University. Although we had a relatively inactive hurricane season in 2009,  it’s very possible that the upcoming 2010 season will be very different. Here is the link to the original post on the News Press Website:

http://www.news-press.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2009912100327

We  have also re-printed a few of the key exerpts from the story. Read on…

12:25 P.M. — FORT COLLINS, Co. — An early extended-range forecast for 2010 calls for above-average Atlantic basin hurricane activity, according to the Tropical Meteorology Project at Colorado State University.
The report marks the 27th year for the CSU hurricane forecasting team, which is now led by Philip Klotzbach and William Gray.
The team anticipates a range of 11-16 named storms, 6-8 hurricanes and 3-5 major hurricanes (Saffir/Simpson category 3-4-5) with sustained winds of 111 mph or greater.
For the first time, the team is calling for a range in its December early season forecast since the report is based on Atlantic basin conditions that can change substantially by the start of the hurricane season on June 1.
“Our early December statistical forecast methodology shows evidence over 58 past years that significant improvement over climatology can be attained,” said Klotzbach, the lead author of the forecasts.
“We foresee a somewhat above-average Atlantic basin hurricane season,” Gray said. “We anticipate the current El Nino event to dissipate by the 2010 hurricane season and warm sea surface temperatures are likely to continue being present in the tropical and North Atlantic during 2010 – conditions that contribute to an above-average season.”

For the 2010 Atlantic basin hurricane season, the CSU hurricane forecast team predicts: A 64 percent chance that at least one major hurricane will make landfall on the U.S. coastline in 2010. The long-term average probability is 52 percent. For the U.S. East Coast, including the Florida Peninsula, the probability of a major hurricane making landfall is 40 percent (the long-term average is 31 percent). For the Gulf Coast from the Florida Panhandle west to Brownsville, the probability is 40 percent (the long-term average is 30 percent). The team predicts the probability of a major hurricane making landfall in the Caribbean as 53 percent (average for the last century is 42 percent). Along with today’s report, the team has updated the Landfall Probability Web site that provides probabilities of tropical storm-force, hurricane-force and major hurricane-force winds making landfall at specific locations along the U.S. East and Gulf Coasts within a variety of time periods. U.S. landfall probabilities are available for 11 regions and 205 individual counties along the U.S. coastline from Brownsville, Texas, to Eastport, Maine. Probabilities are also available for Central America and the Caribbean. With the help of Bridgewater State College in Massachusetts, the website is available to the public at http://www.e-transit.org/hurricane.
The hurricane team’s forecasts are based on the premise that global oceanic and atmospheric conditions – such as El Nino and tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures – that preceded active or inactive hurricane seasons in the past provide meaningful information about similar trends in future seasons. The team will issue seasonal updates of its 2010 Atlantic basin hurricane activity forecast on April 7, June 2 and Aug. 4.

Citizens Insurance to Raise Rates

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

Many of us are familiar with Citizens Insurance and their policy that requires homeowners with homes valued at $750,000 and higher to have hurricane protection. What you may not know is that those rates will be increasing soon.

Here is a link to an article that appeared in the Fort Myers News Press:

http://www.news-press.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=200991030075

We hope you find this to be informative.

Slide Screen – Fast, Easy, Simple Hurricane and UV Protection

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

Are you looking for strong, easy to deploy, Florida Building Code approved storm protection? Would you like a product that can be used for privacy and sun control as well?

In the event of a hurricane, you’ll have plenty of things to worry about. Running around looking for tools, fasteners, plywood or panels shouldn’t take up all of the valuable time that you will need to prepare yourself and your family for this very serious situation. Storm Smart Industries is proud to present its newly updated slide screen product.

This new product utilizes the same code-approved track system already utilized in deploying the Storm Catcher Hurricane Wind Abatement Screen. A second screen, designed specifically to keep the sun and its damaging UV rays from heating the glass or interior of your home, simply slides into the same track when weather is hot. Should a storm threaten the area, You can pull out the shade screen and slide in the Storm Catcher screen for Florida Building Code approved hurricane protection.

Storm Smart CEO, Brian Rist, states “The two weather conditions which impact Florida the most are hot sun and dangerous wind-based storms. This solution provides for both climates equally. There are no tools needed. You will simply pull out one screen and slide in the other based on weather conditions.”

You can read more about this product at: stormcatcher.com/prod_slide_screen.php

Houston Chronicle Story About Fabric Hurricane Protection

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

The Houston Chronicle recently wrote a story on hurricane screen protection. It is an informative article and much of the information pertains to The Storm Catcher line of hurricane screen materials. Here is a link to the story as it appeared.

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/realestate/homes/6591432.html


2009 Hurricane Season Starting Slow, But Could Heat UP

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

El Niño conditions have developed over the past few months, and that’s the most likely reason that the start of the season has been relatively quiet, experts say.

Still, an El Niño also formed in 1992, and that year saw Hurricane Andrew, one of the most powerful hurricane to strike the U.S.

Andrew, the 1992 Atlantic season’s first named tropical storm, was a tropical depression on August 16. It was a Category 5 storm on August 24 just south of Miami, Florida, with winds of about 165 miles an hour.

El Niño conditions slow down hurricane formation mostly in the Caribbean Sea and tropical Atlantic waters. But powerful hurricanes can form elsewhere.

Hurricane Alicia, for example, formed in mid-August 1983 just off the Louisiana coast during an El Niño. That storm later struck Houston, Texas, with 115-mile-an-hour winds.

Untested Hurricane Protection Could Be Dangerous.

Tuesday, July 14th, 2009

Here is an interesting article that originally appeared in the Sarasota Herald Tribune and was written by Kate Spinner.

Untested Hurricane Protection Could Be Dangerous.

Hurricane Season 2009 – Day 1

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

Today is the first day of the 2009 hurricane season. For those of us that work in the hurricane protection industry, that means we’re about to be very busy. For the rest of the world it means it’s past time to be prepared. If you don’t have an emergency plan, get one together now. If you don’t have an emergency kit put together, get one now. Although there are conflicting reports on how active this season will be, all it takes is one storm to make landfall near us, and that suddenly makes it a very active season. Be prepared! Finally, if you have not protected your home from a hurricane, now is as good a time as any. Storm Catcher has many ways to help you keep driving wind, rain, and debris from compromising your home this hurricane season.

So take a look around this website for a while. We’re sure that there is a product here to fit your needs and budget.

World of Hurricane Protection Show in Tampa

Friday, May 15th, 2009

It was good to see so many of our dealers at the WOHP Trade Show in Tampa last week and we trust you found it as worthwhile as we did. It was especially good to see our representatives from Texas and Louisiana and hear that business is picking up in those areas. Business has also been picking up steadily the past few months throughout Florida. We had a very good April and May has started out strong. We anticipate another very good month as we move into our busiest time of the year.

We received a great deal of interest in our new dual screen system that incorporates a solar screen and a hurricane screen together in one unit. We have received many inquiries over the years about using our Storm Catcher screens to provide shade, keep out bugs and even sold them in northern Canada to keep snow off people’s decks during blizzards. The display we had at the show featured two motorized screens in a dual track; the solar screen in front and the hurricane screen behind. The solar screen requires a less powerful motor than the hurricane screen and the motor we used is powered by a small solar panel and battery. Though the solar screen is in its developmental stages, we believe this is the wave of the future and we will soon have it available for our dealers.

A More Detailed 2009 Hurricane Season Prediction

Thursday, March 19th, 2009

Fort Collins. December 10th, 2008. An early extended-range forecast for 2009 calls for somewhat above-average Atlantic basin hurricane activity, according to a new report from the Tropical Meteorology Project at Colorado State University.

The report marks the 26th year of the CSU hurricane forecasting team, which is led by Philip Klotzbach and William Gray.

The team’s first extended-range forecast for the 2009 hurricane season anticipates 14 named storms forming in the Atlantic basin between June 1 and Nov. 30. Seven of the 14 storms are predicted to become hurricanes, and of those seven, three are expected to develop into intense or major hurricanes (Saffir/Simpson category 3-4-5) with sustained winds of 111 mph or greater.

“We’re forecasting an above-average season based on our early assessment of factors that influence an active hurricane season including warm Atlantic sea surface temperatures and the likely absence of El Nino conditions,” said Klotzbach, lead author of the forecasts. “The media and general public should realize that there is a large amount of uncertainty with our early December prediction, issued seven months prior to the start of the hurricane season.”

This forecast is based on an extended-range early December statistical prediction scheme that uses 58 years of data. This statistical model explains a considerable amount of hurricane variability in hindcasts issued from 1950-2007. Over this time period, the three-predictor scheme correctly forecast above- or below-average seasons in 45 out of 58 years. The forecast model also successfully predicted an above-average season in 2008.

The entire forecast report is available on the Web at http://hurricane.atmos.colostate.edu.

“We are currently in an active period for Atlantic hurricane activity.  This active cycle in the Atlantic basin is expected to continue for another decade or two at which time we should enter a quieter Atlantic major hurricane period like we experienced during the periods from 1970-1994 and 1901-1925,” Gray said.

The CSU hurricane forecast team also predicts a 63 percent chance that at least one major hurricane will make landfall on the U.S. coastline in 2009. The long-term average probability is 52 percent.

For the U.S. East Coast, including the Florida Peninsula, the probability of a major hurricane making landfall is 39 percent (the long-term average is 31 percent). For the Gulf Coast from the Florida Panhandle west to Brownsville, the probability is 38 percent (the long-term average is 30 percent).

The team predicts above-average major hurricane landfall risk in the Caribbean.

Along with today’s report, the team has updated the Landfall Probability Web site that provides probabilities of tropical storm-force, hurricane-force and major hurricane-force winds making landfall at specific locations along the U.S. East and Gulf Coasts within a variety of time periods. U.S. landfall probabilities are available for 11 regions and 205 individual counties along the U.S. coastline from Brownsville, Texas, to Eastport, Maine.

The Web site, available to the public at http://www.e-transit.org/hurricane, is the first publicly accessible Internet tool that adjusts landfall probabilities for regions and counties based on the current climate and its projected effects on the upcoming hurricane season. Klotzbach and Gray update the site regularly with assistance from the GeoGraphics Laboratory at Bridgewater State College in Massachusetts.

The hurricane team’s forecasts are based on the premise that global oceanic and atmospheric conditions – such as El Nino and tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures – that preceded active or inactive hurricane seasons in the past provide meaningful information about similar trends in future seasons.

For 2009, Gray and the hurricane forecast team expect continued warm tropical and north Atlantic sea surface temperatures, prevalent in most years since 1995, as well as the absence of El Nino conditions – a recipe for enhanced Atlantic basin hurricane activity.

The team will issue seasonal updates of its 2009 Atlantic basin hurricane activity forecast on April 7, June 2, Aug. 4, Sept. 2 and Oct. 1. The August, September and October forecasts will include separate forecasts for August, September and October activity.

GRAY RESEARCH TEAM

EXTENDED RANGE ATLANTIC BASIN HURRICANE FORECAST FOR 2009

-Released Dec. 10, 2008-

Tropical Cyclone Parameters                 Extended Range

(1950-2000 Averages in parentheses)          Forecast for 2009

Named Storms (9.6)*                                     14

Named Storm Days (49.1)                               70

Hurricanes (5.9)                                                7

Hurricane Days (24.5)                                      30

Intense Hurricanes (2.3)                                    3

Intense Hurricane Days (5.0)                              7

Accumulated Cyclone Energy (96.7)               125

Net Tropical Cyclone Activity (100%)               135

* Numbers in ( ) represent average year totals based on 1950-2000 data.

Source: Colorado State University.