Hurricane Harvey Strengthens; Bringing Life-Threatening Flood Threat To Texas And Louisiana
Hurricane Harvey continues to intensify in the western Gulf of Mexico and will likely be a Category 3 hurricane as it makes landfall along the Texas Gulf Coast on Friday night or early Saturday morning.
Forecasters expect the storm to then stall and dump as much as three feet of rain anywhere from Corpus Christi to southwestern Louisiana. Life-threatening rainfall flooding, storm surge flooding and destructive winds could leave parts of the Gulf Coast uninhabitable for an extended period of time.
The massive hurricane is also expected to impact other states along the Gulf Coast - Mississippi, Alabama and the Florida panhandle.
Truckers and owner operators that could be affected should review the following important precautions that can be used to help avoid losses associated with adverse weather:
- Make sure you (or your drivers) are well-rested and alert before getting behind the wheel.
- Advise drivers to check weather conditions prior to departing to determine where the bad weather has struck and where it’s headed. The latest updates on Harvey’s progress are available at https://weather.com/, which includes a clickable severe weather alerts map. Conditions should then be confirmed every hour or two as they can change rapidly, and flash-flooding can occur suddenly.
- Urge drivers to allot extra time to reach their destination and have an alternate route plan in place before leaving so they’re better prepared in the event conditions require using it. State Highway Patrol and Department of Transportation websites provide up-to the minute information on traffic, road closures and detours.
- Establish a communication system that requires scheduled contact times with your drivers so they can be updated on conditions. (Drivers should avoid the use of cell phones while driving.)
- Caution drivers that vans, because of their height, may be affected by strong winds. Drivers should slow down or pull over to a safe area, away from trees, power lines or other tall objects that could fall onto their vehicle, until dangers have subsided. Additionally, drivers should watch for objects that could potentially blow into the roadway.
- If your operation is located within the storm zone, move any vehicles that are not going to be in service to higher ground. Flooding is the greatest cause of storm damage.
Importantly, remind drivers that they should keep headlights on to improve visibility; avoid sudden braking that could send their vehicle into a skid; avoid driving into standing water: add more space around their vehicle to allow sufficient time to slow down or stop on wet, slick road surfaces; and SLOW DOWN to increase traction and control.
Owner Operator Direct is a trucking insurance company. We have the best rates for the best drivers, period. Need a commercial truck insurance quote? Give us a ring at 800-499-1044. Or answer a few questions online and we'll email you a quote.