Updated November 27, 2023
Originally posted Sept 24, 2021
Hurricane season in the United States Atlantic region begins June 1 and extends through November 30, though experience has taught us that hurricanes can occur at any time during the year. Preparation is key for businesses to not only withstand the storm while it’s happening but also in the aftermath, which can be equally problematic for businesses and communities alike. Fuel tanks can help prepare your business in many ways.
Hurricanes can cause widespread devastation in their wake. The sad truth is that this type of hurricane can leave homes and businesses without power for days, weeks, or even months depending on the severity and scope of the hurricane’s damage. Fuel is essential in those initial days and weeks after a hurricane has hit. For this reason, fuel tanks need to be an essential component of your hurricane preparedness.
While most people think of coastal areas as “ground zero” for hurricanes, the reality is that the destruction they leave behind, including power outages, downed trees, and severed lines extends far inland. And because power companies are on standby with power trucks ready to move into coastal areas, inland towns and communities are some of the last areas to have power restored.
For instance, three weeks after Hurricane Ida swept through Louisiana, parts of the state remain without power and utilities predict it could be more than a week before power is ultimately restored. What this means is that it isn’t only the coastal cities that need to prepare large fuel tanks when hurricanes strike.
Store Fuel for Generators After the Storm
This is essential if you want to keep the doors to your business open in the immediate aftermath of a hurricane. Generators can keep your business running when the power is done but only if you have enough fuel to keep them going. Large fuel tanks provide greater storage capacity to fuel your generators, but smaller tanks can work, especially if you choose portable tanks that can be transported for additional fuels if outages linger. That is something many in Mississippi discovered after Hurricane Katrina when they had to load fuel tanks onto trucks and drive for hours in search of fuel for generators. You may even consider multiple portable fuel tanks along with one large stationary tank.
Provide Fuel for Employee Vehicles After the Storm
In areas where power outages are widespread, fuel pumps do not work. That means that even if roads are passable, people can’t get fuel to drive back and forth to work. If you need your people available to keep your business operating, providing fuel for their vehicles is a great way to get them where they need to be. Also, if your business needs delivery drivers, route drivers, etc., you’ll want to keep those vehicles fueled to serve your customers’ needs.
To Aid in Rescue Efforts
The one thing that is so amazing about communities, large and small, across the country is that when disaster strikes, businesses and residents work together to help others within the community. Whether the rescue efforts involve vehicles driving from one location to another in search of people who need help or rescue, powering chainsaws to cut trees that are blocking roadways, or fueling boats attempting water rescues in flooded areas, gas is needed in all rescue efforts after a storm. Your fuel tanks can help you keep the doors of your business open. That is true, but they can also help you fuel your community when the storm is over and that may be even more important.
Keep Essential Equipment Operating
Even if your business doesn’t remain open while the power is out, you may have equipment that needs to continue operating while the lights are out. This includes things like walk-in coolers for restaurants that store pounds of costly food items. Supermarket coolers and freezers, HVAC and air filtration equipment, computer equipment, and more. The list goes on for miles and many businesses have equipment that needs to operate even when the doors of the business aren’t open. Fuel tanks can help you store sufficient fuel to keep your generators going so this vital equipment doesn’t miss a beat.
Jump Start Your Clean-Up Efforts
No one wants to wait for weeks or even months to begin cleaning up and picking up the pieces after a major storm does damage to your business. While you may need to wait until you’ve documented things with your insurance company, you want to begin the cleanup process as soon as humanly possible. Sometimes, that time is long before the power is restored. This means you’ll want an operational generator and plenty of fuel to keep it working when you need it. You can use it for climate control, operating steam cleaners, vacuums, and more to clean and sanitize your business after a hurricane comes through.
Fuel Powers Your Power Tools
Rebuilding, boarding up, and restoring damaged buildings are all essential tasks after hurricanes blow through. With strong winds, storm surges, and spin-off tornadoes, hurricanes are no joke when it comes to destructive capabilities. Without fuel for generators, it can be virtually impossible to power the tools that will help you rebuild and repair damage to your business after the storm passes.
The ability to flip a switch and have power is something so many of us take for granted every day. Going even a few hours without power is a huge discomfort for modern businesses and homes alike. Generators are extremely helpful after storms pass, but only as long as you have the fuel you need to keep them going. Unfortunately, fuel is the one other thing that is often in short supply after hurricanes – for many miles.
That is why large-volume fuel tanks need to be as essential to your disaster planning and hurricane preparations as generators happen to be. The more fuel your business has on hand when the storm comes, the better positioned you are to help in your own recovery and that of your community.
Fuel Tanks: Safeguarding Business Continuity and Community Resilience
The significance of fuel tanks in bolstering your business's resilience during hurricane season cannot be overstated. As demonstrated, these tanks play a pivotal role in ensuring the continuous operation of generators, enabling your business to stay open when power outages are widespread. Moreover, they provide a lifeline for employees by offering fuel for their vehicles, facilitating their ability to commute, and ensuring essential services like deliveries can continue uninterrupted.
Beyond the immediate needs of your business, fuel tanks also emerge as crucial assets in community-wide rescue efforts, powering vehicles and equipment essential for post-storm operations. Whether it's sustaining vital equipment during power outages, jumpstarting cleanup efforts, or fueling power tools for reconstruction, the versatility of fuel tanks becomes evident in the multifaceted challenges posed by hurricanes.
Investing in large-volume fuel tanks is not just a precautionary measure; it is a commitment to proactive disaster planning that positions your business not only to weather the storm but to contribute significantly to the recovery of both your enterprise and the community at large. In essence, fuel tanks stand as indispensable partners in fortifying your business and community against the unpredictable forces of nature.