Prepare for Severe Thunderstorms
Some basic tips in order to prepare for severe thunderstorms and their aftermath.
1. Clear any debris from all culverts and drains.
2. Make sure gutters and downspouts are unclogged.
3. If your basement is prone to flooding, move things upstairs or raise them off the floor.
Power Outages and Spikes
1. Have working flashlights with spare batteries on hand. Make sure everyone knows how to safely get to a flashlight if the power fails.
2. Verify availability and location of candles and lanterns in case a power outage lasts a while.
3. Review with children the danger of downed power lines.
4. Unplug all electronic equipment that is plugged directly into wall sockets. All electronic appliances, from televisions to computers to microwave ovens, can be damaged or ruined by electrical surges associated with storms. The best long term protection is to plug such appliances into special "surge protecting" power strips that automatically disconnect the appliance when lightning causes a surge of power to come through your home's electrical wiring.
1. Close storm shutters if you have them. Most modern shutters don't actually close and are for decorative purposes only.
2. Move lightweight play equipment, trash cans, outdoor furniture, umbrellas, etc. to shelter. If this isn't convenient, tie several such items together to reduce the odds of them becoming dangerous projectiles during the storm.
3. Move vehicles to the garage or carport to avoid falling branches and hail.