Social Safety Check

Hurricane Matthew

Well, our first hurricane has come and gone as a business in south Florida. Fortunately, we dodged a HUGE bullet. However, Hurricane Matthew had us sweatin’ bullets up until about 2 hours before he was supposed to hit. There are never ending things to prepare for – like, ya know, the garbage can that’s full of trash. WHAT do you do with that? It doesn’t fit inside through the door (which would just be gross anyways). What about the outside furniture that has seen a few lizards, bugs, and dirt? Yup, all of that comes inside too. Then, to think about all of your expensive equipment inside your building with a MASSIVE banyan tree sitting perfectly right outside the front door. It makes one a tad nervous with a category 4 hurricane coming straight towards you. Not to mention, friends who you haven’t spoken to in 5+ years start calling and texting to check in on you and offer you a place to evacuate to.

Once the hurricane had passed through, we all started to get notifications through Facebook asking if we were safe. It was letting us know that our friends were marked safe as well. Social Media is pretty cool. In a time that is extremely stressful and worrisome for family and friends who are not nearby to check on you, Facebook has developed a “Safety Check” so you aren’t scrambling to contact everyone to let them know you are OK, while also potentially having no power left on your cell phone, or very little cell service.

Social Safety Check

This Safety Check was developed back in 2012 because of the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan. Mark Zuckerberg stated in 2014, “Today we announced the launch of Safety Check on Facebook. Over the last few years there have been many disasters and crises where people have turned to the Internet for help. Each time, we see people use Facebook to check on their loved ones and see if they’re safe. Connecting with people is always valuable, but these are the moments when it matters most. Safety Check is our way of helping our community during natural disasters and gives you an easy and simple way to say you’re safe and check on all your friends and family in one place. It’s meaningful to be in Tokyo to announce this because the great earthquake and tsunami a few years ago inspired us to build the first version of this for Japan. Now we’re glad to have this ready to serve everyone in the world.”

Unfortunately, Florida has had to use this feature a few times in 2016 – however, we are pretty grateful this is actually a useful tool to be utilized when it’s needed the most. Of course, we had to have a few drinks before and after this whole experience!

Although Hurricane Matthew didn’t hit us, our thoughts are with everyone who was in his path.