Springtime is an enjoyable time of year, providing us with warmer temperatures and leading us into summer after the long and cold winter. Springtime is also one of the most turbulent seasons in terms of weather, with large thunderstorms sweeping across many states.
Thunderstorms in spring can be ferocious, causing potentially thousands of dollars worth of damage to homes and businesses. In fact it is estimated, that damage to property and crops in the US amounts to almost $1 billion every year. The reason for the regularity of thunderstorms in spring has to do with the collisions of air masses with very different temperatures, with moisture and rapidly rising warm air being the two essential ingredients. Most thunderstorms last for around 30 minutes and extend over an area of 24 km, often leaving devastation and destruction in its path.
A major factor in the damage caused is not found in the storm itself, but in the fact that people are ill-prepared. Many people choose not to react to thunderstorms, instead assuming that they will not be affected. While proper preparation may not prevent every eventuality, it will certainly reduce the amount and the cost of damage.
A thunderstorm will batter cities, towns and villages with high winds, heavy rain and lightening, so it is important to take precautions against each. Arguably the most harmful to property is rain. During a storm, rain can be heavy and prolonged, causing damage to roofing, guttering, foundations and belongings. Ensuring guttering and drains remain clear at all times will allow rainwater to flow properly and away from the home. If weather forecasters are speculating that a storm is likely to cause flooding in your area, it will be wise to move all items from the basement and up to higher floors, or at the very least, store items in waterproof containers.
During a thunderstorm, all electrical supplies should be unplugged to avoid potential damage from the electrical surges that are often synonymous with storms. Power outages are common in some states during a storm. Working flashlights with spare batteries will be essential.
Thunderstorms and high winds go hand in hand. Flying debris is the norm and can cause a great deal of damage to homes. Storm doors and operational shutters can prove a worthy investment and are a must in states with regular storms such as California and Colorado. Any patio and garden furniture should also be moved to an indoor location or anchored down, to avoid becoming part of the flying debris.
By taking a few simple steps and the necessary precautions to protect your home and family will prevent potentially thousands of dollars in repairs and insurance premiums.