Sunday, September 28, 2008

It's Called a Hurricane Fence for a Reason



When I was growing up in Port Arthur, everyone had chain link fences. Nobody had wooden privacy fences. Those came later, in he '80s I think. We had another name for the chain link fences: hurricane fence.

I never gave the name hurricane fence much thought until after Hurricane Ike. My sister Bonnie recently bought a house and her backyard doesn't have a wooden privacy fence. It has a hurricane fence.

After Hurricane Ike lots of wooden fences went down. After Hurricane Rita, practically all of the wooden fences in the area went down. As Bonnie and I were driving around Beaumont after Hurricane Ike looking at all the downed fences, I told her, "I bet you're glad you have a hurricane fence...."

Suddenly, a lightbulb went off in my brain. All my life, I had referred to chain link fences as hurricane fences not really appreciating the significance of the "hurricane" part of the name.

Of course, people will fix their wooden fences and subdivisions all along the gulf coast will continue to erect new wooden fences. People think chain link fences are ugly. People want privacy. People are stupid.



10 comments:

Just a Plane Ride Away said...

What a mess!

ms. e said...

I never really thought about that either. I guess it makes sense... the wind can just blow right through the chain links. Hmmmmm.

Grimm said...

Growing up, we had a chain link fence and there were very few wooden fences.

Nowadays, like you said, everyone wants their privacy. Thankfully I live in the country where all fences are pretty scarce.

Jack said...

On the other hand, when a great big tree limb falls on a wood fence, it's relatively cheap and easy to fix. The "hurricane fence," not so much so. In fact, not at all so.

Steve said...

I lost wood fence and hurricane fence to Ike. I can fix the wood, but would have to pay someone to stretch the chain link. If, that is, I wasn't replacing it with wood.

George said...

I hate wooden fences, and our neighborhood requires that we have them. My brother-in-law visiting from Baltimore looked around and asked, 'You Texans waiting for the Indians to attack again?' Best thing about hurricane fences were those with 'spikes' on the top not bent over . . . a true test of manhood to climb/jump.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

I be damned. I never made the connection, either. I DID have a wooden fence once -- that went down in a windstorm.

Laurie said...

Just - HUGE mess!

Ms. E - I know!

Grimm - My mom and dad have met three of their neighbors they didn't know before the fence blew down. That says something right there.

Jack - Interesting.

Steve - Hmmmm...

George - The tops of the gates sometimes had some pretty cool stuff on them, too.

Old Horsetail - There you go.

Susan in St. Paul said...

Are there hurricane fences that provide some privacy and come in pieces like wooden fences do?

Laurie said...

Susan - Slats can be woven into the chain link, but that would probably defeat the wind resistance thing.

A person could always plant hedges along the fence line.