Gulf Coast Braces for Another Storm: Preparation in Full Swing

Gulf Coast

As another storm approached the Gulf Coast, North Beach residents and business owners began planning to safeguard their homes and livelihoods. The looming weather threat follows Tropical Storm Alberto, which wreaked havoc just two weeks ago, leaving many underwater and trapped in their residences.

Gulf Coast Lessons from Tropical Storm Alberto

Tropical Storm Alberto’s aftermath saw significant disruptions and evacuations coordinated by the American Red Cross and Texas A&M Task Force. Pete Feydo, General Manager of Blackbeard’s restaurant, recounted their experience: “We had to shut down for two and a half days with the last storm. We got about three inches of water throughout the whole restaurant.” Power outages compounded the challenges, prompting businesses to reconsider their preparedness plans.

Gulf Coast Preparing for the Worst

Determined not to be caught off guard again, Feydo and his team have taken proactive measures. “We’ve got 20, 60-pound bags of sand coming, which should give me 40 more sandbags that we are going to put out, utilize out front here,” Feydo explained. Additionally, they are running down food supplies to minimize waste in anticipation of another potential shutdown.

Despite Blackbeards’ relatively higher location on North Beach, away from the immediate waterfront, other establishments weren’t less fortunate during TS Alberto. Pier 99, for instance, experienced severe flooding and a prolonged closure.

Pier 99’s Preparations

Doug Backer, General Manager of Pier 99, expressed his concerns: “We’re going to get the storm surge, we know, coming off the bay. We’re also going to get the flooding. This end of North Beach is notorious for flooding. We were closed for five days last time.” Workers spent Friday filling sandbags and installing silk fences to mitigate the impact. Additionally, the staff is considering an early closure over the weekend to ensure safety.

“We’re going to take a lot more of our equipment upstairs. Our dining room is much higher than the rest of the area,” Backer elaborated. “We’re going to rearrange the dining area and stack booths. We’re probably going to shut down on Sunday. We’re expecting higher water.”

Residents’ Reluctant Acceptance

Residents of North Beach are no strangers to the disruptive force of storms. Robert Catalano, a local, shared his pragmatic approach: “I can’t prepare too much. I’m going to try to lift my refrigerator three feet. It’s not much you do. You get your important stuff, papers, pictures, and photos, and you get them up off there. It’s mother nature, you can’t beat mother nature, and it’s only stuff.”

Others have chosen a different strategy, temporarily relocating to stay with family until the storm passes. This collective sense of community and preparedness highlights the resilience of those living on North Beach.

With another storm on the Gulf Coast, the people of North Beach are bracing for impact. Their experiences from Tropical Storm Alberto have informed more robust preparation efforts, showcasing their resilience and determination to weather the storm.

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