Auto Rental News reached out to Enterprise Holdings regarding how the company is managing business affected by Hurricane Harvey. While the situation in Houston is still fluid — as area managers assess damage, account for employees, renters, and vehicles — the company did provide this statement regarding how it responds to natural disasters.
“When a natural disaster strikes, supporting local recovery efforts becomes top priority for Enterprise Holdings,” said Lisa Martini, manager of corporate communications for Enterprise Holdings. “We are prepared to respond and to move vehicles into affected areas as quickly and as seamlessly as possible. Enterprise Holdings plays a unique role in providing local transportation alternatives, particularly when natural disasters like hurricanes and tornados, wildfires, and snow and ice storms hit a community. Its fleet exceeds 1.2 million vehicles in the U.S., so in emergency situations like the hurricane and flooding in Southeast Texas – when thousands of vehicles are damaged – Enterprise Holdings’ technology, expertise, and network can make a critical difference.
To facilitate this kind of response, regional Enterprise operations, including those in southern Texas, have an Emergency Action Plan that focuses on how branch offices communicate with each other when a disaster, like Hurricane Harvey, strikes to ensure that the right number and types of vehicles are available.
Currently, Enterprise is in the process of collaborating with catastrophe teams as they are coming into the affected area for recovery efforts, assessing damage, and beginning cleanup. These teams include Federal Emergency Management (FEMA), General Services Administration (GSA), state of Texas, insurance catastrophe teams, and energy companies.
In addition to supporting mobility and infrastructure needs during times of emergency, Enterprise also works with nonprofit partners to assist with disaster relief efforts. Enterprise has worked with the Red Cross for more than 30 years, including an annual million-dollar commitment by the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation to the American Red Cross’s Annual Disaster Giving Program (ADGP).
“Contributions to ADGP provide a funding base for disaster relief services, enabling the Red Cross to respond immediately to meet the needs of those affected by disasters of all sizes,” said Martini. “In fact, the Enterprise Foundation is donating an additional $1 million to the American Red Cross to aid in the recovery of affected communities in Texas.”
Additionally, Enterprise’s Mobile Emergency Response Vehicle (MERV) is on its way to the area and will be stationed in Dickinson, Texas, by Wednesday. In the event of an emergency, MERV operates as a portable branch office. It is equipped with three workstations, five computers, and a front counter. It can operate on a generator for more than 120 hours, according to Martini.
A significant weather disaster will typically produce an increase in insurance claims several days and weeks after the storm has passed. Enterprise will continue to work with its insurance and collision repair partners to add vehicles to the fleet in the affected areas in the coming weeks.
“Currently, several thousand vehicles from our locations in neighboring cities and states are prepared to be brought into the most impacted areas in Houston within next couple weeks once it is safe to do so,” said Martini. “More will be added as recovery efforts continue.”