Living in Florida, lightning can be an everyday occurrence, particularly in the summer months. In fact, the Central Florida area reports more lightning strikes than any other part of the country. While the chance of having lightning hit your home is somewhat rare in the rest of the country, it’s not that unlikely or unusual here. You may have friends or family members who have lost electronics or even parts of their homes due to a lightning strike. If you’re concerned about lightning hitting your home, here’s a quick rundown of what you need to know and what you should do if a lightning strike occurs on your property.
A lightning bolt wants nothing more than to become grounded, so it will travel down to the surface of the ground through the path of least resistance, which can mean traveling through the systems built into your home that naturally conduct electricity. The plumbing, heating and wiring systems of your home allow the lightning to travel down and become grounded once hitting the earth. While this can happen without any damage occurring, the amount of power being channeled through your home can overload and fry the wiring, circuitry and more.
The National Weather Service advises that it is possible to be struck by lightning while inside your home. If for example, your home or a power line close to your home is struck by lightning while you are talking on a corded home phone, lightning can travel through the power line and strike you. To avoid being affected if lightning strikes, avoid using any of the systems in your home that may conduct electricity, including the water, telephone, and cable.
If lightning strikes your home directly, many types of damage can occur as a result. The lightning can cause a fire to start by striking wood parts of the home, or by heating wires enough to cause an electrical fire. A power surge caused by the lightning strike can damage any electronics that are plugged in at the time, including televisions, radios, computers and small appliances like coffee makers and DVD players. Each time that you suspect a lightning strike has hit your home, you should call emergency services so they can verify no fires have started in any part of the walls, attic or wiring.
Once there is no more risk of immediate danger, you can begin to process of assessing the damages to your home and filing a homeowners insurance claim. If you want to give yourself the best chance of having your homeowner’s insurance claim paid in full, consult with a public adjuster before you file. The team at Five Star Claims Adjusting is equipped to help you with any type of homeowner’s insurance claim, including damages caused by a lightning strike. Contact us before you contact your insurance company to get our help working on your claim.