Farm and stable owners affected by Harvey, the massive hurricane and tropical storms that hit Texas, and now the monster storm Irma in Florida and neighboring states face a long hard road to recovery.
Hopefully emergency preparedness plans were in place for the immediate effects and people, along with their horses and pets, moved to safety. Now what are your plans once you are able to return to your property and inspect the damage?
AFTER A DISASTER
• Call all horse owners regarding the disaster, even if there is no damage or injury.
• Check all the fencing and check pastures and gates for any sharp objects.
• Look for unsafe conditions such as downed power lines, the smell of gas and unstable structural conditions.
• Be aware of wild animals and snakes.
• If horses are lost, contact local farms, veterinarians and humane societies.
• Be cautious in approaching animals that have gone through a disaster as they may be frightened and unruly.
• Inventory all horses and inspect them for injuries.
• Check all feed and supplies for needed replacement.
• Check with your vet and Department of Agriculture for information about possible disease outbreaks.
• Notify your insurance carrier promptly to report all damage and follow their instructions.
The Atlantic hurricane season typically does not end until November 30th. Jose, the next storm is now being tracked. It is early to predict the strength and path, however, “some Global Forecast System models bring Jose close enough to impact the east coast – potentially the northeast”. Review your emergency preparedness plans now. Are the limits adequate on your farmowners insurance policy? Might you need flood insurance? Take all necessary precautions and stay safe!