As Hurricane Harvey heads for the Texas coastline, PPAI members in the area are preparing for damaging winds, heavy rain and the potential for massive flooding. The storm is expected to make landfall late Friday on a stretch of coastline about 70 miles northeast of Corpus Christi.

“We are contacting customers with critical deliveries and trying to find a way to expedite production so we can get products out,” says Peter Hirsch, president of supplier Hirsch Gift, Inc., in Houston. “We are also contacting customers who have critical delivery deadlines on Monday because we don’t know what the situation will be then.” He is also advising employees that the company is expected to be open on Monday, weather permitting. He expects to assess the situation over the weekend. “We don’t want anyone driving through high water,” he says.

His business operations aren’t the only weather-related concern for Hirsch at the moment. He serves on the show committee for the Houston Promotional Products Association Hot Stuff Expo, which is set to open Tuesday morning with exhibitors setting up on Monday. As of press time, the show is still on schedule as planned.

“The board and trade show committee are meeting tomorrow afternoon to assess the situation,” says Hirsch. “This show is vital to HPPA. Hopefully the weather blows through over the weekend and then clears out.” A total of 220 booths have been sold for the show at the NRG Center. It takes place from 9:30 am to 2:30 pm on Tuesday. “All systems are go, other than the unpredictable weather,” he adds, promising any further updates on Monday morning.

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