March may be known to “go out like a lion,” but Midwesterners face storms all spring and summer. We already got a taste of spring in April with devastating tornadoes and high winds. And there may be more on the horizon. While we know that thunderstorms hit every year, many residents of Iowa and Illinois don’t take proper precautions to stay safe. The more knowledge you have, the more you can protect your family and property.
Here are a few quick facts about thunderstorms:
- If you can hear thunder, lightning is close enough to be dangerous. The National Weather Service recommends staying inside for at least 30 minutes after you hear the final clap of thunder.
- Lightning kills more people each year than tornadoes or hurricanes.
- A thunderstorm is considered severe if it produces hail at least 1 inch in diameter or has wind gusts of at least 58 miles per hour
- When storms are happening, listen to local news or visit the National Weather Service for emergency updates.
- Trimming trees and shrubbery makes them more wind resistant. (This means they will be more likely to survive severe thunderstorms.)
- A severe thunderstorm watch means severe thunderstorms are possible. Listen for additional notices and be ready to act if a warning is issued.
- When a severe thunderstorm warning is issued, it means the severe weather has been reported or indicated by radar. These warnings mean imminent danger for you and your property.
The bottom line
At Werner, we specialize in securing homes and helping pick up the pieces after a disaster. Learn more about our work with storm damage.
(Check out the American Red Cross for valuable storm preparation information. And download the new Red Cross Emergency App, available on all smartphones, tablets and the Apple watch.)