Plywood sales jump at Home Depot and Lowe's as hurricane nears
September 12, 2018 | 1:34 pm CDT
WILMINGTON, N.C. - As Hurricane Florence looms, consumers along the East Coast are flocking to their local home improvement and hardware stores. A Home Depot spokesperson told Fox Business that the company's East Coast stores are selling greater amounts of plywood, generators, flashlights, bottled water, and other similar items. Local residents are being advised to block up windows with plywood.
Home Depot shares hit another all-time high Wednesday for the third day in a row, reported Fox. Home Depot and Lowe's shares each rose nearly 2 percent in trading Monday, while roofing supplier Beacon rose 7.3 percent. Regional construction company Fluor and engineered wood/OSB manufacturer Louisiana-Pacific both saw shares rise 1 percent, reported CNBC.
The Category 3 hurricane, expected to make landfall sometime Thursday, has forced the evacuation of more than one million people in Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
The storm took a dangerous turn Wednesday morning, and is expected to stall along the edges of the Carolinas - extending the duration of torrential wind and rain in the area. The storm could last for days.
Local lumber suppliers, like NC Lumber and Supply, gave away free plywood and OSB beginning Tuesday morning. In an effort to accommodate, they asked that those interested take measurements before coming and to know exactly how much they need. The store ran out of wood by 2 pm Tuesday.
New Jersey-based lumber supplier Ritten Lumber's guide to boarding up a home says the best way to protect the windows of your home from debris during a hurricane is to cover them with plywood.
"Plywood is a thin, durable wooden board that consists of several compressed layers. Before you purchase plywood for boarding up your windows, you should first measure the width and height of each window you will be covering. This will allow you to determine how much plywood you will need." 

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Robert Dalheim

Robert Dalheim is an editor at the Woodworking Network. Along with publishing online news articles, he writes feature stories for the FDMC print publication. He can be reached at [email protected]