At the end of October, an American city set a record for its earliest accumulated snowfall of the season. That city was not Chicago (HUB International's corporate headquarters), a town from the Northeastern seaboard, nor any of the other usual suspects. No, as the popular website AccuWeather.com reported, Columbia, South Carolina, won the dubious honor - a locale where the average daily October temperature hovers around 70 degrees.
And this week, most of the nation (except for eight lucky states) is bracing for the return of winter 2014's most unpopular phenomenon - the polar vortex. Not technically associated with snow, a polar vortex is a large pocket of the coldest air in the Northern Hemisphere. When that frigid air is dislodged farther south than normal from the polar region, Canada and the United States feel the freezer burn.
All of this early, chilly activity points toward the very real possibility of a winter 2015 that eclipses its predecessor in misery. The Old Farmer's Almanac's summary amount to this: "Enjoy the foliage, then hunker down for another freeze." Look for above average snow accumulation and more of the bracing storms and winds that were emblematic of last winter.
On HUB's Crisis Management Center blog, our Risk team has been following Severe Weather Impacts in North America, tracking unusual weather patterns and developing guidance for protecting your family, your home and your business from Mother Nature's worst. As winter gets underway, we'll continue to develop and enhance the resources available for protecting the people and property that matter most, including:
The weather outside is certainly becoming frightful, but there's still time to plan. Protect your business and your family with the expert assistance of HUB's Risk Consulting team.