2014

Experts Say Window Protection Is a Priority For 2013's Atlantic Hurricane Season

ORLANDO, Fla., May 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- With the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) prediction of a busier than normal Atlantic Hurricane Season, experts say now is the time to prepare and make window protection a priority.

According to a Harris Interactive Survey from February of this year, those affected by Hurricane Sandy last October are actively taking steps to protect their homes this year. Unfortunately, as many as 93 percent of those not affected by severe weather last year do not plan to install hurricane shutters or opening protection.

"The primary reason that homeowners do not buy hurricane window protection is that most products are difficult to use," says John D. Smith, president of Storm Stoppers, a nationally recognized hurricane window protection manufacturer in Orlando, Florida. "Most homeowners use heavy plywood or corrugated metal hurricane panels, which take many hours to re-install." 

Protection

Type

Bolted On?

Safe Exit From

Every Opening?

Homeowner

DIY Installation?

Minutes to Re-install

Per Opening

Lets in

Light?

Materials Cost

Per square foot

Storm Stoppers

No

Yes

Yes

1 minute

Yes

$6 to $7

Plywood*

Yes

No

No

10  minutes

No

$2 to $5

Storm Panels*

Yes

No

No

15 minutes

No

$7 to $8

Roll Downs*

Yes

No

No

3 minutes

No

$30 to $55

Hurricane Glass*

Yes

No

No

None

Yes

$35 to $50

*Source: Sun-Sentinel Hurricane Shutter Guide

Fire safety experts point out bolted-on plywood or corrugated metal hurricane shutters cannot be removed from the inside in an emergency. More than a dozen homeowners have died since 1998, trapped behind their hurricane shutters in fires. Fire Battalion Chief Leigh Hollins, in a 2011 interview about hurricane shutter tragedies on WWSB TV-7 in Sarasota, Florida, said, "You cannot get through these products from the inside." 

"Storm Stoppers are the only hurricane window protection product that my wife Lynn and I can remove from the inside in an emergency," said Carter Coupland of Virginia Beach, Virginia. 

Coupland said they installed the lightweight, translucent, corrugated plastic panels in about a minute per window, and they protected the couple's home during Hurricane Sandy.   

For the 2013 Atlantic Hurricane Season beginning June 1, NOAA is predicting 12 to 18 named storms of which, six to 10 could become hurricanes. 

"We need to be prepared, especially with this above-normal outlook," said NOAA Administrator Kathryn Sullivan.

Media Contact: John D. Smith, jsmith@storm-stoppers.com, 407-423-5959, www.plywoodalternative.com.

SOURCE Storm Stoppers



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