Last updated: Tuesday, September 14, 2021, 10:01 a.m. We will continue to keep you updated as information changes.
Retail Center Updates
All Retail Centers are operating on their normal schedules.
We are actively monitoring Tropical Storm Nicholas as it moves into Texas. While we see some rain, our area is not expected to see the full effects of the storm until late this evening into Tuesday. Please be sure to let your manager know if you are experiencing flooding as early as possible in the morning. Currently, we are operating all retail centers and offices on a regular schedule. At this time, we don’t expect that to change.
Check the staff weather line (713.799.6378) for updates to retail center and office openings posted by 7 a.m.
We will communicate any changes as we have them.
Hurricane Preparedness Checklist
There’s no technology that can tame the destructive force of a hurricane. But through the right kind of preparation, you can reduce the damage it might cause to your property. Below, you’ll find some tips that will help you feel better prepared.
THINGS TO DO IN ADVANCE OF STORM
Ensure you have hurricane shutters or ¾ inch outdoor plywood boards for each window of your home (Plywood clips work very well for windows). Install anchors and pre-drill holes for the plywood so you can put it up quickly in the event of a storm.
Install head and foot bolts on doors for extra protection.
Install hurricane straps or clips. These are designed to help hold your roof to the walls of your home.
Assess your property to ensure landscaping and trees do not become a wind hazard and remove any diseased and damaged limbs from trees. This will keep them from blowing around during a storm.
Pre-select a garage or carport to park your car in, or an area of higher ground to move your car to in the case of flooding. Consider building a safe room in your home to withstand high winds and flying debris.
Information is available at FEMA.gov.
THINGS TO DO RIGHT BEFORE A STORM
- Secure buildings by closing and boarding up windows. Remove outside antennas.
- Bring all lawn furniture, outdoor decorations, trash cans, hanging plants and anything else that could be picked up by the wind inside. Anchor objects that cannot be brought inside.
- Move your car to a garage or an area of higher ground in case of flooding.
- If you must leave your car outdoors, park as close to a building as possible. Move your car away from trees or poles that may topple onto it.
- Make sure you fill your car’s gas tank. In the event of a severe storm, gas stations may be closed or have long lines.
- Get a small amount of emergency cash.
- Turn your refrigerator to its coldest setting to preserve the contents inside.
Conducting a home inventory is one of the best ways to recover from hurricane damage. It allows you to keep a record of what you own, which will simplify the process of sorting through damaged items should you need to file a claim. Do this today, and if you do have to face a storm this year, you will feel better prepared.
WAYS TO CONDUCT YOU HOME INVENTORY
Move from room to room recording the value of each of your possessions. It is also helpful to keep track of model numbers and stores where you purchased each item. Here are methods you can use:
- Notepad and camera. As you take photographs, write down the details of each item.
- Video. This is an easy method because you can narrate the details of each item while videotaping from room to room. Video on your phone makes it a quick upload to the insurance company.
- Personal computer. Personal finance software packages will often include a home inventory program to help conduct your home inventory.
TIPS ON CONDUCTING HOME INVENTORY
- Make sure you record the contents of closets, drawers and cabinets. The value of little things can add up quickly.
- Store all lists, photographs and videotapes in a safe place off the premises. It’s a good idea to keep backups as well.
- Update your home inventory. After making a significant purchase, be sure to add the information to your home inventory while it’s still fresh in your mind. Keep all receipts, especially for big items such as jewelry, furs and collectibles. Having those receipts stored digitally is a great backup.
EMERGENCY SUPPLY KIT
When a hurricane strikes, there’s always the possibility of being without electricity or clean water for days. You should plan accordingly. Below, you’ll find a few things we suggest including in your emergency supply kit. Start now, and if you do have to face a storm this year, you will feel better prepared.
- 3-Day supply of water and ready-to-eat non-perishable food for every family member and pet.
- Manual can opener for canned foods.
- Essential medicines including eyeglasses and contact lenses.
- Personal hygiene items such as toilet paper, toothbrush and toothpaste.
- Paper towels, pre-moistened towelettes and eating utensils.
- Change of clothing, including extra shoes and rain gear.
- First-aid kit and manual. Include bandages, antiseptic, tape, a compress, non-aspirin pain reliever and anti-diarrhea medication.
- Battery-powered flashlight and radio with extra batteries.
- Blankets, pillows and sleeping bags (one for each family member).
- Mosquito repellant and citronella candles.
- Two coolers – one for food, the other ice.
- Quiet games, books, playing cards.
- Plastic tarp for roof/window repair and tools (hammer/nails).
- Plastic trash bags.
- Special items for infant, elderly or disabled family members.
During hurricane season you should not only expect the need to evacuate, but you should also prepare for it. Start now, and if you do have to face a storm this year, you will feel better prepared if local authorities give the word to evacuate your flood emergency zone. Know your flood evacuation zone and go if advised by authorities.
- Learn the best evacuation routes and keep a road map in your car in case you’re forced to take unfamiliar roads.
- Arrange for a ride well before the storm if you don’t have your own transportation. You may be forced to evacuate.
- Prepare an emergency supply kit for your car with extra keys, food, water, jumper cables, a first-aid kit and sleeping bags. See the Emergency Supply Kit section for a suggested list.
- Make a plan now for what to do with your pets. (Many shelters and hotels will not accept them.) If you are unable to take your pets when you evacuate, make sure you leave behind “Pet Inside” signs on your front and back doors with the number and kind of pets inside so others can evacuate them.
- Identify an out-of-state contact, so if your family members get separated, you’ll know who to call. If time allows, call or e- mail your out-of-state contact to let them know where you are going and when you expect to get there.
- Plan a meeting location at least 50 miles inland in case your family gets separated
- Fill up your bathtub, sinks and other large containers with fresh water. This will serve as an important reserve should you be without running water after a storm.
GATHER IMPORTANT PAPERS TO TAKE WITH YOU
- Driver’s license or identification
- Social Security card
- Proof of residence (deed or lease)
- Insurance policies
- Birth and marriage certificates
- Stocks, bonds, and other negotiable certificates
- Wills, deeds, and copies of recent tax returns
Highway Travel Information
Travel information including contra-flow plans.
Getting Shelter and Help
Find the local number for assistance, locate a shelter, and down the app for assistance online.
- 800.435.7669 (listen for options)