How to properly prepare for a storm in Montana.
So, you’ve just checked the weather forecast and there’s a warning out for a severe thunderstorm. Before it hits, take that period of calm to ensure all loose objects outside are secured or moved inside during the storm. Move any cars undercover – or, at the very least, away from any trees – and check all your gutters, pipes and drains are clear of any possible blockages.
It’s also a good idea to always have an emergency kit ready to go containing a torch, first-aid supplies, battery-powered radio and any essentials should you find yourself without power or water. Store your kit in an easy-to-remember and easy-to-reach place.
Of course, one of the best things you can do for peace of mind during any extreme weather event is to take out insurance.
Stay indoors (preferably in your house’s strongest room – perhaps your basement, hallway or wardrobe) until the storm has passed, and keep away from any windows. Turn off all power points and unplug all electrical devices.
If you’re unfortunate enough to be outside during a storm, avoid trees and find the nearest shelter. Stay away from drains, gutters and waterways – they may look clear at the moment, but floodwaters can rise with surprising speed.
Should the storm hit while you’re in your car, do not attempt to drive through floodwater. If possible, move to a safe spot on higher ground and switch on your radio for updates.
When it’s safe to leave the house, conduct a quick examination of your property and look out for any safety hazards or damage – whether it’s a hole in the roof, a fallen tree or power lines. If damage has occurred call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls to help you. SERVPRO is open 24/7 365 days a year and can start the repair process to get your home back in order. Call 406-458-6008.
After you’ve ensured your own property is safe, visit your neighbors (particularly those who live alone) and check that they – and their home – are also safe.