Be it a business or a residence, every piece of property can be heavily damaged and sometimes, completely destroyed in the face of a Category 4 – 5 tornado. Not only can a cyclonic formation reach wind speeds of above 300km/h, it can also induce more precipitation in one day than the entire country would receive in a whole year!
So, how do you really prepare for a natural disaster that can blow away stone walls, drown entire cities, cause massive landslides and rip ancient oaks in half like twigs? It’s not easy, but if you live in one of the many storm prone, coastal states, the following tips will help you secure your property against destructive storms.
Get Storm Insurance
Living in a storm prone state and not getting storm insurance for your property is a huge mistake. Sometimes, no amount of preparation is enough to prevent damage to your property, and during such times, insurance will come in mighty handy.
Upgrade Your Siding
The siding on your exterior walls and the roof must be upgraded in accordance with the ferocity of the various weather elements in your area. It’s the first line of protection that any building has against rain, wind and snow after all.
If we are discussing a place of business, then you need to look for industrial grade, commercial siding made from steel. Homes can install steel siding too, but unless the area is infamous for being prone to massive storm damage every year, Hardie boards can be another versatile option to consider while upgrading the siding.
Unclog the Gutters Before a Storm Hits
The tremendous downpour must be allowed to drain through the gutters when a storm hits nearby, so clean them out as soon as you hear about the forecast. Failing to do so can collapse the roof or flood the property, causing permanent water damage.
Wind Proof Your Windows
Windows are the most vulnerable points in any building, and once the glass breaks to allow the wind in, everything inside becomes part of the storm’s destruction. To prevent this, keep the percentage of glass to a minimum on the doors, while replacing all regular windows with almost unbreakable double paned, PVB, storm-resistant windows.
These tips should help a property stay strong during most category 1-3 tornadoes, and even withstand Category 4 -5 storms fairly well, as long as the building in question is not in direct line of the storm’s progression. There’s only so much we can do, so, when a 200+km/hr storm is indeed headed towards your location directly, you should always prioritize saving lives by getting everyone into the storm shelter first. The insurance money can help people rebuild, but lives once lost are gone forever. This brings us to our final tip; it doesn’t matter whether it’s a commercial or residential property, if it is located in or near the US hurricane coastline, there must also be a storm cellar in the property by default.