Waffle House company headquarters in Norcross preparing for Florence

Waffle House Storm Center activates for Florence

Waffle House Storm Center activates for Florence

The Norcross, Georgia-based chain keeps nearly every one of its 2,100 locations open 24/7, no matter what the weather forecast says.

With 1,500 locations, mainly across the South and along the Gulf Coast, that are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, it's a big deal when Waffle House closes its doors. If a Waffle House is closed because there's a disaster, it's bad. The team also asked people to "plan ahead and be safe".

When a power outage in 2014 shut down several Cherokee County businesses - the local Waffle House cooked with gas and welcomed customers. However, The Post would like you to know that waiting to leave until Waffle House closes is not the recommended practice for storm planning.

The company prides itself on keeping most of its 2,100 locations open 24/7, even in the face of severe weather, such as Hurricane Florence. And it's rare for the index to turn red.

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If Waffle House is open and serving its full menu, the index is green.

As of noon Wednesday, Waffle House executives had made the decision to close eight of those restaurants that appear to be in the direct path of the hurricane. It's called the Waffle House Index, and FEMA monitors it. At the front of the room, three screens showed storm maps and news coverage of Category 4 hurricane's path.

A yellow index means a Waffle House is open, but offering a limited menu. We have 250 restaurants, and we are monitoring resources so they can roll in right after the storm.

Major companies such as The Home Depot, Walmart and Waffle House serve as role models in disaster preparedness.

More news: Still uncertainty as Hurricane Florences path moves south

The "Waffle House Index" isn't as well known as some of your favorite rhymes, but it is fairly reliable. You can't make this stuff up, and that's just a lot of pressure to put on a place that sells waffles.

"If we are open quickly after the storm, that means the community is coming back and folks are out, we are getting back to that sense of normalcy", Waffle House spokesperson Pat Warner told CNN.

"The sooner restaurants, grocery and corner stores, or banks can reopen, the sooner local economies will start generating revenue again - signaling a stronger recovery for that community", the agency wrote in a 2011 blog post.

More news: Threat becomes reality as Hurricane Florence closes in

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