Florida faces a lot of natural disasters, especially in the southeastern part called the Panhandle, where hurricanes can be destructive. These hurricanes, caused by changes in air pressure and whirlwinds from the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic, can cost billions and even lives.
If you live on Florida’s west coast, in places like Tampa, St. Petersburg, or Sarasota, hurricanes are a big concern. Some cities struggle to recover from the damage these storms cause. So, we’re here to help you prepare for these disasters and stay safe.
Keep reading to learn how to protect your home and what to do when a storm is approaching. Here are five things to consider for safety:
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Secure and seal windows, doors, and any other area where water can enter
Natural disasters often bring high-pressure winds with immense amounts of water behind them. Ensure all doors are closed and sealed to prevent water from entering and flooding the house. If you think adding plywood struts across the window and door seals will help, please do so. It is extremely common for loose debris to damage windows, so take preventive action to reinforce the area before it gets to that point.
If water manages to enter the house and you sustain damage, it would be best to contain it and call in the professionals as soon as the storm passes. Search for the keywords Tampa Water Damage Restoration company near me online and find an expert for the job.
Remember to get down to this as soon as you can. The longer you leave water in the house, the more likely it is to cause damage in the foundation.
Bring in all your belongings from the outside
During a hurricane, it’s a good idea to bring in almost all your outdoor belongings. Things like flower pots, tools, bicycles – and nearly anything else – should be moved inside before the storm arrives. Not only can they get carried away, but they can also pose a danger to you and your home. With strong winds, these items can be flung through your windows and leave a gaping hole in your defenses. This is why you ought to be as far away from the windows as possible, preferably in the middle of the house.
Moreover, broken glass and flying objects can cause potential injuries like sepsis, cellulitis, and osteomyelitis, or death in some cases.
Trim your trees, use the wood as reinforcement
If you have tall trees in your yard, trim them quickly if a storm is on the way. This might be a tough decision, but it’s for the best. Check if any branches hang too low or are too close to your house, and trim them to avoid potential damage during the storm. You don’t have to cut down the whole tree, just remove branches that could be a safety hazard.
Sometimes, we don’t realize the weight of a heavy branch during a storm. It can be dense and cause significant damage to your house. After trimming the branches, consider using the same wood to reinforce your doors and windows. Even though it’s just a small amount, don’t let it go to waste; this wood is highly durable and won’t splinter easily.
If you reside in an older house, it’s likely that your roof isn’t in the best condition. If you notice loose shingles, moss growth, or signs of weakness, it’s essential to address these issues promptly. Typically, you can anticipate when a hurricane is approaching. In such cases, it’s advisable to contact roofing professionals in advance so they can inspect your roof before the storm arrives.
Even if they charge a little extra for the short notice, it’s worth paying the difference. This precautionary measure can potentially save your home from thousands of dollars in damages. In addition, make sure that they clean out your gutters. Leaves and debris can accumulate in these channels, adding weight to the entire structure, which may cause it to break.
Effective drainage on the roof is already an indispensable component of your house, however, in the wake of a natural disaster, it becomes even more important.
Get to higher ground and turn the power off
Consider relocating to the upper floor of your home, if available, when the storm hits. At the same time, it’s extremely important to turn off your home’s main electricity supply. Water reaching plug and socket levels can pose a significant risk of short circuits or electrical currents in the water. Take immediate action to cut the power when the storm hits, and refrain from reactivating it until you receive clearance from the local fire department.
Electrocutions resulting from downed power lines and in-house electrical currents are common during such situations. In addition,exercise caution and avoid venturing into stagnant water until you’re absolutely certain it’s safe. Do not hesitate to dial 911 for guidance on the appropriate course of action.
A natural disaster can indeed be a very precarious situation. You don’t know what to expect and one wrong move can spell disaster. In this article, we’ve discussed five essential steps to help you navigate through the storm and minimize potential damage to your home.
While it can be an incredibly frightening experience, it’s vital to stay focused and composed. Your presence of mind plays a key role in preventing property damage and ensuring your family’s safety. Prioritize safety and take your time before venturing out after the storm has passed.