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Hello, everyone. Reporting live from the heart of Houston, I’m here to bring you the latest updates on the devastating severe storm that has wreaked havoc across our beloved city and much of Texas. The storm has left at least four people dead and nearly a million without power. Mayor John Whitmire has described the scene as one of strong winds and “some twisters” that have downed power lines, spread debris, and left many roads impassable. As we navigate through this challenging time, it’s crucial for both business owners and homeowners to understand how to secure their properties and ensure safety.

Current Situation in Houston

Overview of the Storm’s Impact

The severe storm has caused unprecedented damage across Houston. The death toll has risen to four, and nearly one million residents are without power. Mayor John Whitmire has emphasized the severity of the situation, noting that strong winds and “some twisters” have hit the area, causing widespread damage and making many roads impassable. It’s a stark reminder of the power of nature and the importance of being prepared.

On-the-Ground Reporting

I’ve been on the ground since the storm hit, and the scenes here are devastating. Downed power lines, debris scattered everywhere, and trees uprooted are common sights. In my own neighborhood, a large tree fell across the main road, blocking access and cutting off power lines. It’s a similar story for many residents across the city.

Securing Your Property After the Storm

Immediate Safety Measures

Staying Safe

First and foremost, your safety is the priority. Avoid downed power lines at all costs—they’re extremely dangerous. Check your home for gas leaks, and if you smell gas, leave immediately and call the authorities. If your home is severely damaged, consider evacuating to a safer location.

Evacuation Advice

If you’re advised to evacuate, do so promptly. Grab your emergency kit, which should include essentials like water, food, medications, and important documents. Ensure your family and pets are safe, and follow the evacuation routes provided by local authorities.

Assessing Damage

Initial Inspection

Once it’s safe to do so, conduct an initial inspection of your property. Look for structural damage, broken windows, and roof damage. Be cautious of weakened structures that could collapse.

Documenting Damage

Take plenty of photos and videos of the damage. This documentation is crucial for insurance claims. When my neighbor’s roof was damaged last year, having detailed photos helped them get their claim processed quickly.

Property Security for Homeowners

Temporary Repairs

Secure your home with temporary repairs. Cover broken windows with plywood or heavy-duty plastic. If you have roof damage, use tarps to prevent further water damage.

Hiring Contractors

Be cautious when hiring contractors. Sadly, scams are common after disasters. Ensure the contractor is licensed and reputable. Get multiple quotes and check references.

Property Security for Business Owners

Securing Business Premises

For business owners, securing your premises is critical. Reinforce doors and windows if they’ve been damaged. Consider hiring armed security or security guards to protect your property from looting and vandalism.

Protecting Inventory

Move valuable inventory to safer locations if possible. If you can’t, make sure everything is as secure as it can be. During Hurricane Harvey, a local shop owner I know moved his entire stock to the second floor, saving thousands of dollars in potential losses.

Power Restoration and Clean-Up Efforts

Utility Company Updates

Restoration Timeline

Utility companies are working around the clock to restore power. However, with nearly a million people affected, it might take some time. Stay updated with their announcements and follow any safety guidelines they provide.

Safety Precautions

While waiting for power to be restored, use generators safely. Keep them outside to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning, and never refuel them while they’re running.

Community Support and Resources

Local Assistance

Numerous local resources are available to help storm victims. Shelters, food distribution centers, and emergency services are stepping up to provide assistance. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help.

Volunteer Efforts

If you’re in a position to help, consider volunteering or donating. Many organizations are coordinating efforts to assist those in need. Your contribution can make a significant difference.


Recap of Key Points

Securing your property after a severe storm is a challenging but essential task. Ensure your immediate safety, assess and document damage, make temporary repairs, and protect your property from further harm. Both homeowners and business owners need to be vigilant and proactive during this recovery phase.

Encouragement to Take Action

Stay informed, stay safe, and take the necessary steps to secure your property. Whether it’s hiring a reputable security guard company or following proper emergency management protocols, every action counts.

Additional Resources

Emergency Contacts

  • Houston Emergency Management: (713) 837-0311
  • Texas Department of Public Safety: (512) 424-2000
  • Local Utility Companies: Check your local listings for contact numbers.

Further Reading

  • “Preparing for Natural Disasters: A Guide for Homeowners and Business Owners”
  • “Understanding Your Insurance: What to Do After a Storm”

In these trying times, remember that the community is here to support you. Let’s rebuild together, stronger and more resilient. Stay safe, Houston.

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