October 20, 2019 By: Joshua Behr & Emily Steinhilber
The nation was riveted watching the trudging progression of Hurricane Dorian as its outer bands lashed Florida coastal communities and the Mid-Atlantic, pounding the coastal populations of Georgia and the Carolinas northwards. Millions of Americans once again considered the prospect that this hurricane, as it changed in intensity and breadth, would track to make landfall.
This collective angst stemming from Dorian’s march was well founded in Hampton Roads as this region is vulnerable to inland and coastal flooding from severe weather events. Hampton Roads residents are well aware of the devastation to property and displacement of populations that often follow in the wake of passing hurricanes.
This encounter with Dorian should remind us that preparation for a storm means more than the immediate stocking-up on supplies, securing lawn furniture and battening down the proverbial hatches. Preparation for a storm also includes anticipating and preparing for the longer-term recovery.
That’s why Old Dominion University has been engaging partners such as the Hampton Roads Community Foundation and others in developing the idea of Recover Hampton Roads, a unique year-round organization preparing for long-term recovery from catastrophic weather events such as Dorian.