The 2011 Atlantic Hurricane season is now underway, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting a more active season than in 2010. A normal season would have 9-12 “named” storms, 5-7 of these reaching hurricane strength and 1-3 forming major hurricanes. For 2011, the forecast was for 16 named storms, nine hurricanes, and five major hurricanes.
Bell Performance is located in Central Florida but has municipal, industrial, and individual customers across the nation. Everyone located within proximity to possible hurricane and storm landfall is recommended to have a hurricane/emergency preparation plan in place. Other people may live in areas prone to the other devastating force of nature, tornados. For them, their tornado emergency plan would be similar.
Bell Performance would recommend these resources to assist you and your family in preparing for these emergencies.
Municipalities, industrial companies, and public/private fleets have a whole new ballgame when it comes to emergency preparation. These entities should have detailed plans in place to prepare them for catastrophic emergencies. These plans always should include contingencies for fuel storage to power the emergency generators and equipment that will be needed to provide services during such an event.
A good emergency plan should consider the following elements with respect to stored fuels:
A plan of action for the fuel farm to prevent the release of fuel into the environment and to protect the fuel in the tank firm during and after an emergency.
Engineering analysis of the tanks and piping to determine their ability to withstand hurricane-force winds, storm surge, and heavy rains.
The amount of fuel needed to be maintained in the tanks at each hurricane category to stabilize the tanks and minimize damage.
Stored diesel and gasoline fuels have to be ready to use at a moment’s notice because an unexpected emergency can happen at any time. These fuels need to be kept fresh and their quality must be protected from the elements that attack stored fuel quality.
Exposure to water, air, and heat are the most common causes of the degradation of stored fuel quality. These elements will set off chemical reactions that destroy the quality of the gas or diesel and render them less or even ineffective. Treating the fuel with a fuel stabilizer (for diesel fuel) and a water control agent (especially important for gasoline and ethanol) are important parts of an emergency fuel management protocol.