Hailstorm safety tips
Wind and hailstorms remain one of the most frequent and severe causes of property damage in Canada. Damage caused by wind and hail costs Desjardins Insurance and its policyholders millions of dollars every year.
Make a plan
A hailstorm can disrupt electrical service and is often accompanied by other severe weather events, such as hurricanes and tornadoes. Prepare your family for the hazards and inconveniences of a hailstorm by creating a disaster preparedness plan, including a disaster survival kit and an emergency evacuation plan.
Hail often occurs during severe weather patterns, such as strong thunderstorms. When severe weather threatens, tune in to a battery-powered radio for updates. A severe thunderstorm watch means that conditions are right for thunderstorms to become severe. A severe thunderstorm warning means that a storm poses an immediate threat to the people and property in its path. This warning may be accompanied by a siren or other community alert system.
Move inside, stay inside
Hailstones vary greatly in size, but even small ones, driven by gravity and strong winds, pose a danger to anything or anyone caught in a storm. As a storm approaches, put vehicles in the garage and bring pets inside. If you are outdoors, go indoors immediately.
Once you’re indoors, close all drapes, blinds and shades to prevent broken window glass and hailstones from entering your home. If possible, move to a basement, cellar or other level of the building not directly below the roof. Stay indoors until the storm has passed.
If you’re on the road during a hailstorm, stay in your vehicle and slow down or stop, as roads may become slippery. Once you have pulled over safely, turn your back to windows or cover yourself with a blanket to protect yourself from broken glass.
Protect your roof
Roof damage is a common consequence of hailstorms. Following a strong storm, you should evaluate the condition of your roof to identify any damage and prevent further deterioration.
Even if your roof is not currently damaged, you may want to discuss making these changes with a reputable roofing contractor.