Protecting Your Home During Sudden Summer Storms

Wednesday, 26 June 2019 18:16

The Piedmont and Foothills of North Carolina are known for great weather. With mild winters and temperatures at least a few degrees cooler in summer than what are neighbors down east experience, residents in this area spend a lot of time outdoors. The one downside to our amazing weather is the potential for sweltering humidity. With excessive humidity, comes pop up afternoon thunderstorms that often catch us by surprise.

 

Surprise Summer Storms

Diurnal heating and high humidity fuel the formation of late afternoon and evening thunderstorms. These kinds of storms often feature gusty winds and frequent cloud-to-ground lightning. North Carolina ranks in the top five for lightning deaths, due at least in part to the suddenness of summer storms that can form anywhere with little warning.

As Autumn approaches, powerful cold fronts with drastic temperature differences prompt severe weather; however, these systems may be predicted days in advance, and storms associated with them often form into lines that can be tracked with radar. Summer “pop up” storms may form randomly over your head and move little before it dies.

Dangers associated with summer storms include:

  • Lightning: The most dangerous aspect of summer storms, lightning strikes the earth approximately 25 million times each year. In the U.S. firefighters respond to over 20,000 calls each year for fires directly caused by lightning.
  • Hail: Hail has caused over 30 billion dollars in damage since 1996.
  • Wind: Powerful summer storms can pack winds in excess of 60-mph, bringing down trees and powerlines and leaving behind a mess. Our area is not immune to microbursts and tornadoes. One such storm caused tens of thousands of dollars in damage in 2017.
  • Flash Flooding: Slow moving, moisture-laden summer storms can drop torrential amounts of water in a relatively short amount of time. In the U.S., flash flooding is responsible for about $8 billion dollars in damage.

There is no way to prevent summer storms from impacting your home and neighborhood, but you can make sure your home and family are as ready as possible.

Protecting Your Home and Family During Summer Storms

Here are a few key tips for preparing and protecting your home during summer storms:

  1. Maintain Fire Alarms: It does not take a severe storm for lightning to strike your home or wind to bring down powerlines, causing a fire. It is vital to have quality fire alarms that are kept in working order at all times. Contact Integrity for inspection and if necessary, replacement of your fire alarm system.
  2. Have Weak Limbs and Dead Trees Removed: Before the storm hits, have dangerous trees and limbs removed.
  3. Emergency Kit: Prepare an emergency kit with flashlights, spare batteries, non-perishable food items, and whatever else you need in case of a prolonged power outage.
  4. Drainage: Make sure your gutters are clean and lead to adequate drainage in your yard. Find out if your home and property are in a flood plain.
  5. Emergency Response: Practice with your emergency response plan with your family. Know where to go if you do have to have a fire.
  6. Security Cameras: In addition to helping deter home theft, security cameras may record instances of storm damage for insurance purposes.
  7. Weather Awareness: Maintaining weather-awareness is one of the most important ways to protect your home and family. Summer storms can pop up suddenly, but with weather warning and radar phone apps, once the system forms, you can follow its progression and act accordingly. If you can hear thunder, it is time to go inside. Even if the rain stops, it is not safe to go back outside until thunder stops.

Summer storms are brilliant displays of nature and can be beautiful to watch. For the sake of your family and property, treat them with the respect they deserve. Prepare your home and make sure your assets like fire alarms, security cameras, glass-break detectors, and other safety measure are in working order. Contact Integrity Security for more information or installation of your home or business’ security and safety systems.