Blizzard Warning! Counties Affected and a Handy-Dandy Radar Map

December 25, 2010

So, it’s Christmas night and we’re on the brink of what looks to be a pretty significant storm. Blizzard is the buzz word of the moment with a warning for the Greater Boston Area: Plymouth, Norfolk, Bristol, and Essex counties. It even reaches to southern Worcester county.

Then, as you go south of Boston toward the Cape, the blizzard-ness of the storm decreases into what I guess weathermen would call a “Really Bad Storm”.

Check out this map to see the forecasted accumulations.

Here’s a list of the current watches and warnings from 7News.

So, when they say blizzard warning, that means stay home. Don’t go out. If you think you have to go out, think twice. It’s not worth risking it. And even if you drive a 4×4, you are not Superman. Don’t try to be.

After the storm passes though, we should remember that MA just passed the new legislature that homeowner’s are absolutely liable for slips and falls on their property. Make sure to shovel your driveway or have a close friend/family member do it for you. Sand it and add dirt for traction to avoid these instances. If you take these precautions, you will have acted “reasonably”. For more information on this legislation, read my recent post on it or just read this blurb below:

Homeowners and businessowners need to abide by the clause, “act like a reasonable person.” What do they mean? Expense of snow removal and Seriousness/probability of harm are factors in deciding if a person/homeowner acted reasonably. It is a retroactive rule, therefore applicable to all pending claims with a 3-year statute of limitations.

For a list of safe driving tips, check out Weather.com‘s. It’s pretty comprehensive (AKA really long), but you should still read it. If you have a short attention span, skim it, get the gist that you shouldn’t drive, and stay home. 🙂

If you’re looking for a quote,

look no further.

Email Liz@NBAInsurance.com

or call 1-781-871-5414 for more details.


Is Hurricane Earl really Hurricane Bob Version 2? #insurance

September 1, 2010

I decided to do some research. When we say Category 4, we think “oh no!” — especially because in New England, that sort of thing just doesn’t happen. In fact, it hasn’t come close to happening in a long time! So Category 4 — which is pretty bad since 5 is the scariest — can bring winds between 131-155mph. The wind is really where the trouble starts. (I stole those numbers from the chart below from Weather.com).

Saffir’s Scale Hurricane Chart (for your reference) – Courtesy of Weather.com

Then Weather.com goes on to tell us the worded descriptions of the hurricanes. I checked out the one for Category 4 simply becuase seeing the word Extreme in the chart above may have been unnecessarily frightening.

  • Category 4 – Extreme

  • Shrubs, trees, and all signs blown down; extensive damage to roofs, windows, and doors, with complete failure of roofs on many smaller residences; mobile homes demolished.
  • Flat terrain 10 feet or less above sea level flooded inland as far as 6 miles; flooding and battering by waves and floating debris cause major damage to lower floors of structures near the shore; low-lying escape routes inland cut off by rising water about three to five hours before landfall; major erosion of beaches
  • Massive evacuation of inland residences as far inland as 6 miles may be required.
  • What can I say to make this better?

    Well, forecasters seem to say Earl won’t be a category 4 by the time is reaches Eastern MA. Of course if you have a home in the Carolina’s, you should be a little concerned.

    By the time Earl reaches our area, it will have weakened considerably. WHDH’s Pete Bouchard recently blogged that one of the storm’s tracks has its eye passing right over Nantucket. This would mean that the island would get hit the hardest, having winds between 50 and 90 mph. He emphasized “maybe” most likely because he doesn’t want to be wrong. In that scenario, the Cape would also get walloped with 50-70 mph winds. The Greater Boston Area will get hit pretty hard as well with 50-60mph wind gusts. The worst of it seems to be hitting between 8pm and 2am.

    The point is this. Regardless of how much rain we get or how intense Earl will be, you can be sure it is a threat. The wind, specifically, is threatening.

    NBA Insurance advises you all to be prepared. Of course, collect the necessities: water, food, flashlights, batteries, radio in case of power loss. Stay away from windows. You know the basics. Even if you don’t, here are some more:

    1. Bring outdoor objects inside.

    2. Close storm shutters.

    3. Turn off propane tanks and only use your phone for emergencies.

    4. Evacuate if the following conditions apply:

    • You are required or advised to do so.
    • You live in a mobile home.
    • You live in a high-rise.
    • You live on the coast or in a flood-prone area.
    • If you feel you could be in danger.

    5. Reinforce weak or vulnerable areas.

    6. Remove any trees that, if fallen, would damage your property.

    For more tips, visit FEMA’s website.


    South Shore Weather Update- We’ll Let You Know What’s Going On! #insurance #southshore

    August 25, 2010

    A Somerville Public Safety Building was just evacuated due to flooding. This building also flooded in July. (Source: 7News)

    Flood advisories have been issued for the following counties: Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk. A high surf advisory has also been issued for coastal communities. (Source: Weather.com)

    You can be sure though that there is street flooding in areas without a specific flood advisory. So follow the tips below (pasted from an earlier post of mine during another rainy set of days)! And most of all: BE CAREFUL!!

    Check out our tips for driving through flooded areas:

    DRIVING TIPS: (Source: eHow)

    If you cannot avoid driving through floodwaters, take the following precautions:

    -Drive slower due to the minimized visibility and water in the road. You are at risk of hydroplaning. Avoid puddles. Don’t take any sharp turns. Don’t slam on the brakes.

    -If you do hydroplane, ease off your brakes and avoid swerving until  your car regains traction with the road.


    #Bonnie Makes Land Fall in Florida, Headed to Gulf: How it Will Affect #BP Oil Spill

    July 23, 2010

    TROPICAL STORM BONNIE UPDATE:

    In light of Tropical Storm Bonnie’s landfall in Florida and forecasted movement to the Gulf, the oil spill clean up crews have evacuated today, postponing clean up work until after the storm. According to US Official Admiral Thad Allen, this evacuation could add 12 days to the amount of time required to finish the clean up job (Source).

    Tropical Storm Bonnie landed in Florida sustaining winds up to 40mph this morning. It is expected to strengthen significantly when it moves into the Gulf; it could possibly be upgraded to a hurricane.

    According to meteorologists at Weather.com, Bonnie’s movement over the BP Gulf Oil Spill will have significant effects on the lingering oil in the water. It will have what they call the “Hurricane Alex” effect. Alex was a hurricane that hit southern Texas in June (during the oil spill). This storm proved that hurricanes can actually move the oil in the water either washing it ashore on a coast that may have been previously unaffected or making it disappate into the far ocean. Exactly where the oil goes depends on the size and strength of the storm.

    Can this thing make it rain oil?

    No way.

    You said the hurricane season is going to be more active… So what does that mean for the spill?

    Basically, there is a greater risk for oil to build up onto Gulf/Florida coastlines. However, sometimes, the storm can make things work advantageously and cause the oil to break down and dissipate. Unfortunately, the storms also call for the evacuation of clean up crews from the oil spill area- this really puts the whole business behind schedule.

    To see some hurricane tips, check out CNN’s 5 Quick Tips to Hurricane-Proof Your Home.


    #TORNADO WARNING for Southern #Worcester County: #NBAInsurance Fills You in on #SevereWeather

    July 21, 2010

    According to local stations:

    Tornado WARNING for Southern Worcester County until 5:30pm.

    7News Meteorologist Pete Bouchard reports that most of MA will get hit by a storm in the next three hours.

     For tips on what to do in a Tornado, check out 7News’ Tips.

    Source: WHDH, 7NEWS.


    #TORNADO & #SEVEREWEATHER ALERT for #Worcester & #Middlesex Counties!

    July 19, 2010

    According to local news stations, Worcester county, as well as Northern Middlesex County, have severe weather warnings for this evening. Worcester, specifically, has a tornado warning.

    Review these tips for your safety!

    FEMA Tornado Tips

    FEMA Thunderstorm Tips

    In short, stay inside. Refrain from travel if you can. If there is a tornado warning, you should go into your basement until the warning is lifted. Receive updates from a radio if you have it. Make sure your flashlights have batteries. Stay away from windows and retreat to the most interior section of your house.

    Check out this newsreel from WCVB about the 1953 Worcester tornado!

    Stay safe! – NBA Insurance


    #FlashFlood Alert for Eastern #MA, CT, RI: NBA #Insurance Tells You What to Do

    July 13, 2010

    A Flash Flood Alert is in effect now through tomorrow (Wednesday) afternoon (7/13 & 7/14) for Eastern Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. In Massachusetts, the alert applies to the following counties: Central Middlesex, Western Essex, Eastern Essex, Southern Worcester, Western Norfolk, Southeast Middlesex, Suffolk, Eastern Norfolk, Northern Bristol, Western Plymouth, Eastern Plymouth, Southern Bristol and Southern Plymouth. (Source: WHDH)
    Tonight, we can expect strong rain showers and thunderstorms that will last into Wednesday. Forecasters predict rain to accumulate at a rate of 2 to 3 inches per hour. Heavy downpours are expected. Urban areas are reportedly the most at risk to have a flash flood. (Source: WHDH)

    The difference between a flash flood and a regular flood is that the former can develop rather quickly, in minutes. Flash floods also have a tide which is much stronger than that of a regular flood. This current can carry away mud, rocks, and other debris. (Source: FEMA)

    BE PREPARED: (Source of these tips: FEMA)

    1. Unplug and move any electrical items in low-lying areas (ie. your basement) to higher ground to protect them from water damage and you from any electric current in flood waters. Never touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water.

    2. Construct a floodwall at the base of your door to hinder water from entering the building.

    3. If a flash flood is predicted in your area, move to higher ground or evacuate to a safer location.

    4. Beware of streams or bodies of water near your home. They are more likely to flash flood than other areas.

    5. If you evacuate, do not walk through moving water. Several inches of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk, walk where the water is not moving.

    6. If you have to drive, do not drive into flooded areas. If waters do rise around your car, you should leave the car and move to higher ground– if you can do so safely. In a flash flood, you and your car are at risk of being quickly swept away.

    7. Watch the news or listen to your radio to stay in the know about the conditions in your area.

    DRIVING TIPS: (Source: eHow)

    If you cannot avoid driving through floodwaters, take the following precautions:

    -Drive slower due to the minimized visibility and water in the road. You are at risk of hydroplaning. Avoid puddles. Don’t take any sharp turns. Don’t slam on the brakes.

    -If you do hydroplane, ease off your brakes and avoid swerving until  your car regains traction with the road.

    AFTER THE FLOOD: (Source: FEMA)

    1. Wait for news reports to tell you whether your water is still safe to drink.

    2. Avoid flooded waters as they are often contaminated with chemicals and bacteria. Flooded waters may also be electrically charged.

    3. Report fallen power lines to the power company.

    4. Buildings and their foundations are weakened after water damage. Proceed with caution if you enter.

    5. Roads are also weakened, so travel carefully.

    6. Service any electronic equipment that may have been damaged. Damaged sewage systems are a serious health hazard.

    7. Clean and disinfect all items that are wet.


    Flood losses are not covered by a regular homeowner’s insurance policy. Don’t delay— if you or a friend is looking for a free quote to get flood insurance, contact NBA Insurance by phone (781) 871-5414 or email Todd at tc@nbainsurance.com.