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Protecting doors and windows during a typhoon is crucial

Community Bulletin
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(FEMA) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s in partnership with the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas is working to get homeowners back into their homes by helping them rebuild stronger and more resilient through FEMA’s Permanent Housing Construction or PHC Program.

The CNMI is no stranger to super typhoons. One must take several measures, trimming tree limbs, stocking pantries, fueling generators, and boarding windows to minimize a typhoon’s potential aftermath.

Aside from taking action to protect your home during a typhoon, such as duct taping and nailing plywood across your windows and doors, advances in technology and manufacturing have paved the way for a more effective and efficient approach to keeping your home safe during typhoons.

Your home’s entry points, its windows and doors, are the most vulnerable during a typhoon and the key to keeping your roof intact and preventing total mayhem to your home. Protecting those entry points can drastically mitigate damages caused by typhoons, if doors and windows are manufactured and installed to code. Doors, windows, and storm shutters protect more than just your home, they also keep your family and personal property safe and dry.

Once one window or door breaks, your roof becomes more likely to blow off due to the pressurized winds entering your home. This happens because a break in the door or window can cause a dramatic change in pressure inside the home. It’s vital to use stronger glass and better hardware to prevent windows from shattering and doors from breaking or flying open. The idea behind storm shutters is to avoid that initial entry break by protecting those barriers from winds and debris minimizing the post typhoon damage.

FEMA’s PHC Program is repairing and rebuilding homes that are in kind to codes and standards with mitigation included to ensure resiliency. PHC repaired roofs are evaluated and designed by an engineering firm to withstand 195 mph wind speeds and we’re replacing eligible homes with properly rated doors, shutters, and windows.

So, if you’re looking to make your home more typhoon-resistant, consider these mitigation measures when rebuilding, we are.

We want to encourage homeowners who are participating in the PHC program to stay in the program. Currently, we have a total of 321 homeowners participating in PHC Program, 190 for New Construction and 131 for Repair. Survivors who were initially eligible for PHC but opted out of the program can opt-in to the program later but would be required to return any FEMA disaster repair assistance money they have received in full as well as not have taken a Small Business Administration loan disbursement for real property loss.

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