We have not yet reached hurricane season in Florida, but many homeowners in the Tampa Bay area were under the assumption that the dangerous weather patterns brought on by this year’s El Niño had begun to dissipate. However, earlier this year-just days after the start of spring-severe storms moved into Pasco County and caused substantial wind damage to dozens of homes, according to an article in the Land O’ Lakes Patch.
What else do you need to know about these recent storms? And what can you do to protect your home from windstorm damage?
Severe Storms Bring Wind Damage to Pasco County
According to the article, 65 homes sustained serious wind damage at the end of March due to the severe storms that moved through the state of Florida. The storms hit the state in the early hours of a Friday (around 12:30 a.m.) while most residents were asleep, and they carried “flat-line winds of 40 to 60 miles per hour.” Doug Tobin, a spokesperson for Pasco County, indicated that the winds caused seemingly irreparable damage to dozens of mobile homes in the area, and four residences had their roofs torn off. The storms also brought down large trees and caused a golf cart to tip over.
Initially, officials from Florida’s emergency management agency estimated that 13 homes in the area had been harmed by the high winds. However, emergency management officials later conducted a “door-to-door walk through of the neighborhood,” which led them to “dramatically increase” the estimated number of homes damages to 65. Of those homes, Tobin indicated that one was “completely destroyed.” In total, 38 properties were reported to have sustained minor damage, while an additional 26 had “less than major damage,” according to officials. Fortunately, no one suffered any serious personal injuries.
Preventing Wind Damage On Your Property
What can you do to prevent serious wind damage to your home in the event that severe weather strikes unexpectedly? According to a safety checklist from Safety.com, homeowners in Florida should consider the following when planning ways to avoid property damage:
● Have your home professionally inspected to determine whether your roof can “resist the uplift effect of strong winds”;
● Install metal connectors to strengthen your roof;
● Install “permanent storm shutters or temporary plywood covers” over your windows;
● Cover your sliding glass doors, skylights, and any French doors in the same manner you would a window;
● Trim trees regularly to avoid damage from fallen branches;
● Before a storm hits, put away any furniture or other objects in your yard, including but not limited to barbecues, tools, and “anything else that could become a flying missile”;
● When choosing new trees to plant in your yard, select trees that are known for withstanding winds better than others; and
● Have a garage door installed that is designed to withstand heavy winds.
Contact an Experienced Wind Damage Lawyer
Storms in Florida can gain momentum without warning, and strong winds can do immense damage to homes and other properties. If your house recently sustained damage from high winds and you have questions about filing an insurance claim, an experienced wind damage lawyer in Brandon can help. Contact the Valrico Law Group today for more information.