Surviving Summer Storms
Parts of Frederick, Maryland and the nation’s capital were slammed with thunderstorms carrying heavy rain over the course of this past 4th of July holiday weekend. Photos of vehicles underwater surfaced during the storm, illustrating flooded roadways and the severity of the flooding in the area. Even the basement of The White House began to flood, which can only mean that home and business owners in the area suffered an increased amount of damage. The reason as to why these heavy thunderstorms are so prevalent during the summer is the combination of atmospheric conditions that is commonly present during the summer months: moisture and rising warm air. This combination creates prime conditions for thunderstorms to form and it is important to understand what kind of damage summer thunderstorms can inflict upon your home or business.
Thunderstorms often carry lightning, which can strike your home or business during a storm. Direct lightning strikes can lead to the ignition of electrical fires inside the building, tears in the roof and attic of the building, and the loss of shingles or gutters. If electrical appliances such as computers and refrigerators are plugged into outlets during a thunderstorm and lightning strikes the house, they can be harmed or possibly destroyed.
Thunderstorms can carry tremendous amounts of rain in addition to lightning, which can fall quickly and flood areas in its path. Sediment and mud can be carried by the flood water and therefore contaminate any objects with which it may come into contact inside of your home or business. If the flood water is not removed hastily, mold can grow and spread to other areas. It is helpful to understand the most common items damaged by flood water, including flooring, drywall, and carpet, in order to know where to look for water damage after a flood. Be sure to also check whether or not the flood water has shifted the building off of its structural foundation. If so, that can indicate that the building has suffered more serious damage.
How To Deal with the Damage
After the storm and once it is safe to enter areas that have flooded, look for any visible signs of lightning or water damage. Turn on light switches and check electrical breakers for functionality to find out if the building has endured any electrical damage. Keep an eye out for visible water damage on carpets, flooring, or walls and remove the water as soon as possible in order to protect them from the growth of mold. As you begin to remove water and clean up after the storm, turn off all water and electrical systems in order to prevent a reaction between water and electricity that could inflict further damage.