New study grades states on hurricane preparedness, building standards


The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety, a Florida-based research group, released a new study this week that ranked 18 states along the Atlantic coast in order of how prepared their residents' homes are for hurricane season.

On a 100-point grading scale, the results of the study showed many factors are at play when it comes to determining what states are at the greatest risk for catastrophe beyond their geographic location.

A large focus of the study was to take into consideration current building codes and licensing standards enforced in each state.

The study ranked (want to keep tenses consistent, you've used past tense for all the study references prior to this) Maryland 10th among the 18 states with a score of 73. Though Maryland has adopted a statewide Residential Building Code, municipalities still reserve the right to amend the code according to the study, which was a big reason researchers said Maryland didn't receive a higher score.  according to the Institutes Disaster Safety Review.

Two states that border Maryland placed on opposite ends of the list. Virginia, which borders Maryland to the south, tied for first with Florida in the study, while Delaware, which neighbors Maryland to the East, was second to last on the list with a grade of 17.

Mississippi residents were the least prepared for hurricane season. The study gave the state a grade of 4 out of 100. Researchers found that despite being hit hard by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, residential building codes in Mississippi lack almost all uniformity, and standards of quality for new home construction cannot be guaranteed.

Even those living in states that scored poorly still have the opportunity to protect their homes in the event of catastrophic weather. In Maryland and Virgina,  a visit from home inspection contractors like those at Alban Inspections can determine your home's weak-spots and inform you of the steps you need to take to fix them.