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How to Protect Yourself from Summer Storms and High Utility Bills


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Summer means hot days, grilling in the backyard with family, beach vacations and thunderstorm & hurricane season. Forecasters at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service, are predicting above-average hurricane activity this year — which would make it the seventh consecutive above-average hurricane season. For the 2022 hurricane season, NOAA is forecasting a likely range of 14 to 21 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher).

As the hurricane season has just begun, now is the time to gather supplies and determine safety plans for your home, family and pets. In addition to developing a plan of action and photographing your home and valuables, consider these measures as well:

  1. Have an emergency kit with these items you probably already have in your home: flashlight(s), battery powered weather radio, extra batteries to fit each electronic (including cell phone), non-perishable foods (canned goods and dry foods), lots of bottled water, can opener, first aid kit (with a disinfectant), fire extinguisher, blankets, extra clothes, sturdy shoes or boots, clock or watch, whistle to signal for help, important personal items (eyeglasses, prescriptions, etc.), and paper documents such as birth certificates, social security cards, and other significant legal papers.

  2. Know the safest structure of your home to go to during a severe storm such as a basement, underground cellar, or even the most inner part of your home away from windows.

  3. Get routine maintenance on your roof and the foundation! Cracks in the roof are the number one leading cause to flooding damage.

  4. Cut down any unwanted trees or limbs and get your trees trimmed before summer storm season. Trees and branches can fall on your property and damage the siding or windows due to those powerful 100 mph thunderstorm winds.

  5. Contact your insurance company to be more familiar with your policy. Most home insurers do not cover flooding damage.

  6. Keep all expensive and favored possessions off the floor and away from low ground in case of flooding. Keep them in the highest part of the home preferably.

  7. Invest in storm windows.

  8. Keep all patio furniture, grills, etc. in doors before a summer storm hits. Do not forget to park your vehicles in the garage!

  9. If your town is evacuating due to a hurricane, secure and board up windows and any openings of your home.

  10. Finally, take those summer storm warnings and alerts seriously, especially tornado and hurricane warnings! Tornadoes and hurricanes can lead to total property loss and even death.

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