Bracing for Hurricane Season: Preparedness and Resilience 

Written by GrantWorks, Inc.

What Causes Hurricanes? 

Hurricane storms produce winds of over 74 mph and bring about heavy rain and thunderstorms. Also known as tropical storms or typhoons, hurricanes move in a cyclone pattern and typically form over the Atlantic Ocean. Hurricane season runs from June through November, but are typically heaviest in the months of August, September, and October. 

Hurricanes are caused by any disturbance in the atmosphere which triggers warm water in the ocean. Heated ocean water allows moist air to rise and form the cyclone pattern that turns into a hurricane. These damaging storms are characterized by their low-pressure centers, high winds, and heavy rainfall. The impact of these storms can be devastating, displacing communities, disrupting economies, and posing severe threats to human lives and safety. 

It’s important to be prepared for any type of natural disaster, and hurricanes are no exception. Measured on the Saffir-Simpson Scale from 1 to 5, level 1 hurricanes are the weakest while level 5 are the strongest. Level 5 hurricanes can have winds up to or exceeding 156 mph. Once a hurricane hits land, it gradually weakens, but the effects are still disastrous and can affect communities across the country.

Where Do Hurricanes Hit the Most?

 In the U.S., hurricanes most commonly hit states in the midsouth and southeast regions of the country. The most hurricane-prone states include Florida, Louisiana, Texas, the Carolinas, and many other southern states. However, hurricanes often travel up the east coast and impact northern states such as New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and more. 

At GrantWorks, our disaster recovery experts have successfully managed numerous projects dealing with the aftermath of hurricanes such as Hurricane Rita, Ike, Dolly, Harvey, and many others. With over 40 dedicated disaster recovery project managers, our team is equipped for rapid deployment and ready to assist at a moment’s notice. They have also lived through natural disasters themselves and understand the urgency needed to rebuild communities and bring families home. 

How to Prepare for Hurricanes 

With hurricane season escalating, it is critical to have a plan for both the midst of the storm and the recovery process afterward. Develop and discuss an emergency strategy with your family and loved ones. Keep an eye out for any storm alerts and learn your evacuation routes in case you need to exit the area quickly. 

It’s a good idea to prepare a disaster supply kit for your household which would contain all necessary items such as food, water, medication and first aid equipment, sanitary equipment, flashlights, extra batteries, and more. Keep this kit in a safe area where you can easily access it.  

It is also essential to protect any documents required for post-hurricane recovery. Make sure to put essential papers such as social security numbers, birth certificates, insurance information, titles or proofs of ownership, real estate documents, healthcare documents, and all other important items in a waterproof bag or safe. When seeking post-hurricane recovery aid, keep in mind that you will likely need to provide information on the damage caused by the disaster and your total annual household income before taxes. To learn more about disaster mitigation and how to stay prepared, check out FEMA’s website. 

Hurricane Recovery with GrantWorks 

Hurricanes can be devastating for communities, but proper disaster mitigation and post-storm recovery can help communities get back on their feet and prepare for future events. 

GrantWorks has assisted over 600 state, county, and city government entities with grant program management services, and we’ve successfully secured and managed over $8 billion in assistance to hundreds of our communities. Our team of experts understands that having an established recovery team cannot be matched. Every year, we help communities become more resilient and guide them on the road to recovery in the aftermath of disastrous hurricanes. 

What to Expect in the Recovery Process 

GrantWorks offers an extensive list of services to meet clients’ needs wherever they are in the recovery process. Our services include assistance finding funding sources, application development, audit and monitoring support, federal and state procurement, housing rehabilitation and construction, and much more. Through proper mitigation measures, our Disaster Recovery and Resilience Services Division can help families and communities minimize costs and prevent or reduce future losses to lives or property. 

To learn more about what GrantWorks can do to help heal your community after a hurricane, check out Disaster Recovery | GrantWorks.  


Hurricanes – Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (