Hurricane season is officially in full swing and after higher-than-normal hurricane predictions and outcomes over the last several years, 2023 is expected to be a near normal season according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Atlantic hurricane season predictions. While this prediction provides some relief, salon and spas owners should stay vigilant throughout hurricane season.
NOAA is predicting 12-17 named storms (storms with 39mph or higher winds) in 2023. With a 70% confidence in these predictions, NOAA forecasts 5-9 hurricanes consisting of 74 mph winds or higher with 1-4 hurricanes leaning towards a major category storm at 111 mph winds or higher. Just one of these storms could cause irreparable damage to a salon or spa, especially for those business owners who are unprepared. While fortune is known to favor the brave, it will also favor those who take the necessary steps to prepare.
- Have a plan: A hurricane can hit quickly, leaving little time to gather your thoughts and react in the moment. Having a disaster plan ahead of a storm can ensure that employees understand their roles and are prepared to take necessary action quickly. Plans may vary depending on the needs of a specific salon or spa, but they can include tasks such as clearing any outdoor equipment such as signs or furniture, a communications plan in case internet and phone lines go out, an employee evacuation policy and more. Once a plan is finalized, all employees should be trained in what their roles are and how to protect themselves, their fellow team members, clients and the property itself.
- Stay up to date: Salon and spa owners should ensure they are paying attention to local news stations and weather updates to know when a storm might be heading their way. The NOAA National Weather Radio is an informative resource where business owners can access weather news in their local areas. Some last-minute preparations, such as boarding up windows or bringing in furniture might require lead time before a storm hits. Staying ahead of the storm can ensure salon and spa professionals have the time needed to prepare the premises or evacuate.
- Secure Insurance: Because there is no telling how much damage a hurricane will do to a salon or spa, business owners should ensure they have adequate insurance coverage. An insurance agent or broker can perform a risk assessment of a salon or spa to stay on top of the business’ risks and develop a plan and insurance portfolio that will help the business respond, rebuild and recover in a timely fashion.
Hurricane season can be a stressful time and although this year is expected to be milder than recent years, salon and spa owners must be prepared for the worst. The season has just begun, consider evaluating your business’ hurricane preparedness plan today.
Kathy Lopez, Account Manager for SASSI, the Salon and Spa Specialty Insurance program at Brownyard Group. She can be reached at email@example.com.