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What You Need to Know About Straight-Line Winds

Chances are you have never heard the term, “Straight-Line Winds”. That is about to change. It is not only important to know about these potentially destructive forces of nature, but also how to protect yourself, your family, and your possessions when it strikes. If you live in tornado alley, including Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and Arkansas, preparing not only for tornadoes but also Straight Line Winds can save your property and potentially your lives. That is because this area of the country is primarily where these events can occur, however it is possible for Straight-Line Winds to strike anywhere in the United States when certain atmospheric conditions form. To begin, unlike tornadoes, the U.S. Weather Bureau does not issue Straight-Line Winds warnings. That is why United Public Adjusters & Appraisers, wants you to know all you can about this destructive weather anomaly so that you can be prepared.

Straight-Line Wind storms (also known as “Derechos”), like tornadoes, are derived from thunderstorms. These storms differ due to the air currents that cause them. Tornadoes rotate, because air flows into them, whereas Straight-Line Winds are produced from an immense downburst of air that pushes the air outward when it strikes the earth. Another way the type of event that occurred can be determined, is by its debris field. Debris that appears to have been thrown outward in a circular motion is due to a tornado. If the debris field is linear, however, a Straight-Line Wind storm is likely the culprit. To protect yourselves, first and foremost, if the sky darkens and the winds start to whip up, seek shelter immediately, and do not wait for a National Weather Service warning. Straight-Line Wind storms can be just as destructive as a tornado, so it is best to be cautious and safe, rather than sorry.

Both types of storms can produce winds in excess of 100 mph or higher and impact large areas. Here are some important steps to take to minimize damage to your property:

  • If you see the sky darken, take shelter.
  • If you are driving, slow down and keep both hands on the wheel.
  • Avoid tree-lined streets, power lines, and places with objects that can easily be windborne.
  • If at home, when you see a storm approaching, quickly move/store patio furniture, and potted plants where they will not be thrown against your residence, windows, or roof.
  • Move your car into the garage. If you do not have a garage, park it away from trees and any obvious objects that could easily become projectiles. Cover with a tarp and tie down securely to protect your vehicle’s windows and finish.
  • Every season, take a walk around your property and inspect trees to ensure that no limbs will fall and cause damage to your home or to your neighbor’s. Trim trees as needed.

Most important: Be sure that United Public Adjusters & Appraisers is in your cell phone contacts list. This way, should your home or business sustain damage, we can deploy our team quickly to assist. Our team can help you and your family to find temporary housing. We can similarly assist to prevent business disruption and lost productivity if your commercial or office property is damaged or destroyed. United Public Adjusters & Appraisers will additionally review your policy, help you document losses, as well as to prepare and submit your property damage claim. Under our guidance, this claim will include potential as well as hidden damages, as well as an accurate construction estimate to repair/renovate or replace your property. Our team will also oversee the entire claims process and negotiate as needed with your insurance carrier to bring about a just settlement.

We invite you to contact our team now with any questions you have and to learn more about the value of working with the United team of public adjusters to resolve your property damage claim expeditiously. Call to schedule your confidential consultation today.


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