Lenny ChesalBy Lenny Chesal, CRRD
Host.net Chief Evangelist
Hurricane Matthew Warrior

Based on current forecasts, Hurricane Matthew is on a collision course with South Florida. As of now, 1.5 million people have been told to evacuate ahead of the Category 4 storm. The National Weather Service warns “Extremely dangerous, life-threatening weather conditions are forecast in the next 24 hours.” Florida Governor Rick Scott has said in no uncertain terms that this storm is looking to be among the most dangerous our state has faced in decades. President Obama has declared a state of emergency. This is not a drill.

The map below shows you the path Hurricane Matthew is currently on. The entire east coast of Florida, and north into Georgia and South Carolina are going to strongly feel the effects of this storm.

Hurricane Matthew

So what can all of us here on Florida’s Atlantic coast do to prepare? Well, for those who have yet to establish themselves in a safe place – it is imperative they do so now. I strongly hope that residents have already endured the long lines and crowds at grocery stores to stock up on food and at hardware stores for plywood to board up windows. Generators should be gassed up, and medical supplies should be at the ready. Of course, this should go without saying, but remain indoors.

Those of us who have lived in Florida for many years (like myself) have experienced the stress and uncertainty of a hurricane. It is never easy but, if we follow proper protocol and take every measure to keep our family and ourselves safe, we can weather the storm.

At a time like this, the safety of the millions of people who will be affected by Hurricane Matthew is the top priority. Preparing property against significant damage is also something I hope we have all done at this point. Now all we can do is wait it out and do all we can to make sure our families, friends and neighbors are safe.

The way things look now, recovery will be a big job in the coming days, weeks and maybe months. We will have to band together, as we’ve done before, to clean up our communities, assist those who have been injured or suffered losses of property and show the resiliency I know we South Floridians posses.

As a business that calls South Florida home, I would like to also take a moment to assure our Host.net partners that our datacenters in Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale are always prepared for these types of events. We are a proactive organization, and hurricanes are something we plan for at all times. We have armed our customers with resilient, highly available Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity (DR/BC) solutions and meet geographical diversity requirements for data back ups. Rest assured that we have planned, we are prepared and our partners’ data is safe.

This is going to be a tough 24 hours. Dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew – which can’t yet be predicted – will be a monumental task. But I am confident we are all up for it and, in the end, we will resume our normal lives in the not too distant future.

Stay safe, my friends.