Middle Tennessee is a beautiful place to call home and usually, the weather is at least calm, if not pleasant. But every year, tornados and other windstorms disrupt our beautiful climate. 2020 was an especially rough year, with 21 total tornadoes in Middle Tennessee, including the devastating one from March 3rd, followed quickly by the derecho wind event in early May. While we certainly cannot control Mother Nature, we can help you prepare your family and property for the best possible outcome.
Always Be Prepared
It’s not just a Boy Scout’s motto, it’s good sense. There are a few things you can do, buy, compile and discuss to make sure you and your family are ready in case a windstorm, tornado, or another weather-related event disrupts you.
- Trim trees. Takedown trees or clip branches that pose a threat to your house or outbuildings every spring and fall.
- Maintain your roof. Check periodically to make sure you don’t have loose or missing shingles.
- Create a plan. A family emergency plan should be decided upon, then shared with everyone. Kids are going to feel much safer if they have a plan and know what to do and where to go. Include meeting places and contingencies for being at home, school, work, or car.
- Secure outdoor furniture. Outdoor dining sets, playsets, and grills can all be transformed into missiles by a strong windstorm. If you know the weather could turn nasty, bring them in or secure them to minimize the risk of damage.
- Assemble a kit. Put together an emergency kit for every member of your family to last 72 hours without electricity, food, or potable water. Great ideas for how to assemble a kit, as well as other tips and information, can be found here.
Hunker Down and Don’t Touch
During and after a windstorm, it’s important to know where to go, where not to go and what to do or not do. If you have a storm shelter, basement or cellar, take refuge. Keep a weather radio or fully charged cell phone to make sure you know when the danger has passed and it’s safe to come out. If you’re driving, get off the road and seek shelter. (A parking garage is a great option.) When you do come out again, be careful. Power lines may be down, but they are likely still live. Contact the utility company. Don’t touch. These live wires have enough voltage to potentially kill.
Document and Contact Assistance
Take photos with your camera or smartphone of any damage. Contact your insurance company to begin the process of putting your property back together. If you have damage or water issues with your crawlspace or basement, contact Columbia Crawlspace for a complimentary inspection and estimate. Contact us at 931-982-5310 or email us at [email protected].