Taping Windows to Prep for Hurricane is Dangerous, Weather Experts Warn

Oct 29, 2012, 13:07 ET from Federal Alliance for Safe Homes, Inc. - FLASH

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Oct. 29, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- It's dangerous to apply masking tape, duct tape and/or window film on windows or glass doors in preparation for a hurricane because it can create larger and deadlier shards of glass when broken.

This warning from the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH)® comes amid some otherwise well-meaning advice to the contrary as millions of people living in the path of Hurricane Sandy look for last-minute safety measures as the monster storm approaches.

"It is simply a myth to think windows and glass doors should be taped in preparation for a hurricane," said FLASH President and CEO Leslie Chapman-Henderson. "Masking tape, duct tape and specially marketed 'hurricane tape' are insufficient and potentially dangerous substitutions for tested and approved hurricane shutters, impact-resistant windows or properly installed temporary, emergency plywood shutters."

Chapman-Henderson said experts, including FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate; Director of the National Hurricane Center Dr. Rick Knabb and FLASH have worked tirelessly in the months leading up to hurricane season to educate Americans on the truth behind this long-standing myth about the use of tape as a preparatory measure.

"And yet, we're still seeing and hearing people advise folks to do otherwise," she said. "The truth is, tape does not keep dangerous debris from coming into the home or prevent all glass from shattering.  Doing so gives families a false sense of security. Even worse, tape can create larger shards of glass that can heighten danger. Applying tape wastes precious preparedness time and money that is better spent on tested and approved emergency or permanent hurricane protection."

Earlier this year, a FLASH survey conducted by Harris Interactive found that nearly seven out of 10 homeowners still think that windows and glass doors should be taped in preparation for a hurricane.

"This is why we are determined to continue to bust the dangerous window taping myth and are encouraging Americans to Go Tapeless® as part of its hurricane preparedness initiative," Chapman-Henderson said.

There is still time for families at risk to prepare for Hurricane Sandy. FLASH has step-by-step instructions for last minute preparedness activities that, in as little as one hour, can make homes and families safer and better prepared for potential severe weather.  Suggested activities include:

About FLASH                                                                                              

Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH)®, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, is the country's leading consumer advocate for strengthening homes and safeguarding families from natural and manmade disasters. FLASH collaborates with more than 100 innovative and diverse partners that share its vision of making America a more disaster-resistant nation including: BASF, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Florida Division of Emergency Management, The Home Depot®, International Code Council®, Kohler Power Systems, National Weather Service, RenaissanceRe, Simpson Strong-Tie®, State Farm®, USAA® and WeatherPredict Consulting Inc. In 2008, FLASH opened the interactive weather experience StormStruck: A Tale of Two Homes® in Lake Buena Vista, FL. Learn more about FLASH and gain access to its free consumer resources by visiting www.flash.org or calling (877) 221-SAFE (7233). Also, get timely safety tips to ensure that you and your family are always well protected from natural and manmade disasters by subscribing to the FLASH blog – Protect Your Home in a FLASH.

SOURCE Federal Alliance for Safe Homes, Inc. - FLASH