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Hurricane-Proof Home Just Outside of Louisiana Built to Withstand Category 5 Storms

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Hurricane-Proof Home Just Outside of Louisiana Built to Withstand Category 5 Storms


In an era where the weather is getting just as crazy as soaring insurance rates, protecting our homes has never been more important. This reality drove Josh Morgerman, a well-established hurricane chaser and respected meteorologist, to construct a home designed to withstand the most powerful storms. Known as “iCyclone,” Morgerman has encountered the eye of over 70 hurricanes, providing him with unparalleled expertise in hurricane preparedness.

Who is Josh Morgerman?

Josh Morgerman’s reputation as a hurricane expert is well-earned. He has faced storms such as Haiyan, Ian, and Hurricane Patricia, the latter being the strongest cyclone ever observed, with winds reaching 215 mph. His extensive experience led him to the decision to build a hurricane-resistant home in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi—an area notorious for devastating hurricanes like Katrina and Camille.

Seriously, a Hurricane-Proof Home

Morgerman’s home, which he affectionately calls his “Hurricane House,” appears at first glance to be a traditional southern shotgun house. However, this home is anything but ordinary.

“If I’m going to build a home here, it has to be designed and built right; it has to be hurricane tough,” Morgerman explains. The house is a “FORTIFIED Gold” standard home, a designation from the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety, indicating it meets the highest construction standards for hurricane resistance.

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The Fortification Process

Morgerman emphasized the importance of involving a third-party inspector during construction to ensure the home meets all safety recommendations.

This process not only guarantees the house’s resilience but also significantly reduces insurance rates. “Once you comply with all their recommendations, you receive a certificate that says your home is fortified gold,” he said, highlighting the dual benefits of safety and savings.

Tips for Existing Homeowners

For those not building new hurricane homes (which is most of us), Morgerman offers practical advice for hurricane-proofing existing structures:
1. Roof Integrity: A standing seam metal roof is ideal for withstanding extreme winds.
2. Window Protection: Impact-resistant glass or shutters are essential to prevent structural damage.
3. Siding Upgrade: Fiber-cement siding, such as James Hardie siding, provides superior protection compared to traditional materials.

A Community of Weather Experts

Morgerman’s housewarming party, held on the first day of the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season, attracted dozens of residents, weather enthusiasts, and meteorologist Jim Cantore.

The event underscored the importance of hurricane awareness and preparedness. “This is a celebration of hurricane awareness and preparedness,” Morgerman stated, urging attendees to ready themselves for what could be a particularly severe hurricane season.

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A New Weather Station

Adding to his commitment to weather science, Morgerman installed a custom weather station in his backyard to measure winds up to 224 mph. “Mississippi gets the craziest hurricanes,” he remarked, emphasizing the need for accurate scientific measurements.

As the 2024 hurricane season approaches, Morgerman is fully prepared for whatever will come our way. Let’s hope Mother Nature doesn’t test the Hurricane House too hard, for our sake.

LOOK: The most expensive weather and climate disasters in recent decades

Stacker ranked the most expensive climate disasters by the billions since 1980 by the total cost of all damages, adjusted for inflation, based on 2021 data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The list starts with Hurricane Sally, which caused $7.3 billion in damages in 2020, and ends with a devastating 2005 hurricane that caused $170 billion in damage and killed at least 1,833 people. Keep reading to discover the 50 of the most expensive climate disasters in recent decades in the U.S.

Gallery Credit: KATELYN LEBOFF





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Louisiana

Video Shows Truck Engulfed in Flames at Popular I-10 Travel Center in Louisiana

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Video Shows Truck Engulfed in Flames at Popular I-10 Travel Center in Louisiana


A dramatic incident unfolded at a popular travel center off I-10 in Duson, Louisiana, on Sunday (June 23) when a truck caught fire. Numerous photos and a wild video surfaced online, showing the vehicle completely engulfed in flames.

The fire occurred at the I-10 Travel Center Chevron near Miss Mamie’s Casino, a well-known stop for travelers along I-10. According to a Facebook post from the Duson Fire Department, the blaze was reported at 10:52 AM. Firefighters arrived swiftly at 10:54 AM to find a 2016 Ford F-150 pickup truck fully engulfed in flames.

The truck was parked under a metal covering near the fuel pumps, causing heat and smoke damage to the structure. Despite the dangerous proximity to the fuel pumps, the firefighters successfully extinguished the fire with assistance from the Lafayette Fire Hazardous Materials unit, preventing what could have easily been a catastrophic explosion.

Duson Fire Chief Coby Duhon praised his team’s quick response and effective actions, saying, “With the proper personnel and response time, only a vehicle was lost today. No injuries were recorded, and there was minimal structure damage.”

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A video from Jamie Stutes Fontenot on Facebook showed just how dramatic the blaze was.

The cause of the fire is currently under investigation. Chief Duhon also thanked the Scott and Mire Fire Departments for their assistance in managing the situation.

We will update this story if any more new developments are confirmed.

LOOK: The most expensive weather and climate disasters in recent decades

Stacker ranked the most expensive climate disasters by the billions since 1980 by the total cost of all damages, adjusted for inflation, based on 2021 data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The list starts with Hurricane Sally, which caused $7.3 billion in damages in 2020, and ends with a devastating 2005 hurricane that caused $170 billion in damage and killed at least 1,833 people. Keep reading to discover the 50 of the most expensive climate disasters in recent decades in the U.S.

Gallery Credit: KATELYN LEBOFF





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Former OSU Wreslter Inducted Into Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame

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Former OSU Wreslter Inducted Into Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame


One of Oklahoma State’s most memorable wrestlers was honored by his home state over the weekend.

On Saturday, former OSU wrestler Daniel Cormier was inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame. Originally from Lafayette, Louisiana, Cormier was a dominant wrestler in high school.

At Northside High School, Cormier won three state wrestling championships. After his success in high school, he attended Colby Community College in Kansas.
He also dominated there, winning two NJCAA national championships while going 61-0 in two years. Following his undefeated career at Colby Community College, Cormier made his way to Stillwater, where he would be a force for the Cowboys.

READ MORE: Analyzing Oklahoma State’s Toughest Opponents in the New-Look Big 12

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At OSU, Cormier went 52-10 across the 2000 and 2001 seasons. With 36 bonus-point wins, Cormier was good enough to qualify for the NCAA Championships in both years.

In 2001, he earned All-America honors for his performance as he finished national runner-up at 184 pounds. In both seasons, Cormier played a significant role in OSU winning Big 12 championships.

After wrestling for two years under John Smith, Cormier went into freestyle wrestling and represented the United States on a few occasions. Cormier won gold medals at the Pan American Championships in 2002 and the Pan American Games in 2003.

Following his wrestling career, Cormier took up mixed martial arts and eventually joined the UFC in 2013.  Cormier would end his MMA career with 22 wins in 26 fights. He now works with ESPN as part of its mixed martial arts coverage.

As Cormier is in another Hall of Fame, he recognized the importance of his home state in his career.

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Boy, it’s good to be a kid from Louisiana,” Cormier said.

READ MORE: Why Oklahoma State’s Defensive Line will Outperform Expectations in 2024

Want to join the discussion? Like AllPokes on Facebook and follow us on Twitter to stay up to date on all the latest Cowboys news. You can also meet the team behind the coverage.





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Louisiana’s bookstores are vital community hubs

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Louisiana’s bookstores are vital community hubs


Louisiana got some positive media coverage in The New York Times this month, scoring a nice publicity coup in part because of the lively bookstore scene in New Orleans. The Times article, written by Crescent City native Maurice Carlos Ruffin, was a timely reminder that in a region known for great food and music, bookstores are an important part of Louisiana’s civic life, too.

Ruffin, a novelist and professor of creative writing at LSU, wrote the June 5 Times story, “Read Your Way Through New Orleans.” He suggested books that help explain the local culture and pointed travelers to a few literary landmarks, including neighborhood bookstores. Among the New Orleans stores getting a shout-out were Baldwin & Co. near Jackson Square, along with Community Book Center and the recently renovated Octavia Books.

Ruffin’s story pointed to a reality worth keeping in mind as another summer reading season unfolds. Our local bookstores, whether they be in Lafayette, Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Shreveport or other communities around the state, are more than venues to buy books. They’re places where people from all walks of life can gather. In a divided world, these sources of connection are needed more than ever.

That thought’s been very much with me these days as I join many others in mourning the recent death of longtime Baton Rouge bookseller Danny Plaisance. Plaisance, who died June 4, ran Cottonwood Books for many years until ill health forced him to close it in 2022.

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Cottonwood’s mix of new and old books was a perfect classroom for me after I took my first newspaper job in Baton Rouge in 1986, becoming a store regular. The eclectic selection nudged me to explore cheap editions of the classics when I stopped by to catch up on just-published titles. Plaisance’s store was a draw for out-of-towners, too. Actor Tom Hanks combed the shelves a few years ago when he was in Louisiana to film a movie. It’s easy to see why Hanks, a history buff, would have been charmed. With its wealth of vintage volumes, Cottonwood smelled of must and dust, old paper and glue, a scent that seemed like inhaling the past.

While dealers in old books can be known as a crotchety bunch, there was nothing gruff about Danny. We were more likely to discuss family than reading when I saw him at his counter, underscoring Danny’s idea that books are a part of, not apart from, the rest of life.

Peering through Cottonwood’s vacant storefront some weeks ago, I was wistful when I spotted the empty shelves, but the quiet aisles seemed like the deeper absence. People, more than books, make a bookstore a community — a truth made clear when I joined other mourners at Danny’s bereavement service.

The family had printed prayer cards with a picture of Danny at his bookstore counter. I took one home, and I’m using it for a bookmark.

Email Danny Heitman at danny@dannyheitman.com.

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