With the recent weather in tow, thunderstorms are becoming relevant. In light of this, it is important to know how to properly take precautions during these storms to better protect your family and home!
There is something called the “30/30” rule that is helpful for evaluating the current weather situation. Basically when you see a lightning flash, you start counting. If you hear thunder before hitting 30, head inside. Once inside its recommended to stay indoors for 30 minutes after hearing the most recent boom of thunder.
- Do your best to avoid using corded technology. For example the now, not so modern corded phones, or computers. The electrical wires are conductive and may conduct lightning were the situation to arise.
- It’s best to avoid using your cell phone.
- Attempt to avoid functions that involve metal pipes. For example showers, washing hands, dish washer. These have the ability to conduct lightning as well.
- High winds and possible hail may shatter glass or other more vulnerable forms of walls. Avoid being close to windows/skylights/doors.
- In the case of a broken window, ensure your blinds/drapes are closed to prevent hail broken glass from blowing further in the home.
If your outdoors when a thunderstorm is prevalent
- Take cover as soon as you hear thunder or see lightning, especially so if you feel/see hail.
- Head for a fully enclosed location, preferably not an open garage or car.
- If you cant make it to an enclosed building, a car will do, but preferably an all-metal car, truck or SUV. Do not lean against vehicles.
- Do not use/ride bikes or motorcycles.
- If things are bad and you have nowhere to go for cover, squat down and put your hands on your knees, with your head as low as it can go, to become a smaller target.
- If your currently in the water when a thunderstorm rolls in head for shore right away and avoid any metal objects.
- If your in a group of people, its best to spread out. If one person is affected, any people touching or in range will be affected.
- Bring pets indoors, dog houses are not lightning or hail proof.
Mitigating damage to your property
- Remove dead or overhanging tree branches that could potentially damage your home from a fall.
- Put the entire house on a surge protection system.
- Unplug any and all electronic equipment or appliances when not in use during the storm.
- No roof is hail proof, only resistant. So when hail comes around the roofing integrity is something to be aware of. Ensure you have shingles that carry a Class 4 UL rating.
- Be sure to bring vehicles indoors during storms to mitigate any damage to them as well if possible.
The weather has been rather fickle as of late so be aware of your surroundings and interactions to ensure the safety of your family and home!