It’s highly unlikely, but lightning can and does strike houses worldwide. In such an event, it’s important to prioritize safety above all else. Unfortunately, a lot of people are unaware of what to do in such a situation.
So, what to do if lightning strikes your house? The first thing you should do is prioritize your safety by inspecting your entire house for any signs of damage. Once you have identified those, you can move forward to thinking about repairs and filing claims to restore your house.
Keep reading below for more information.
How Does Lightning Work?
Static electricity is discharged by lightning. Air currents and precipitation circulate within the clouds throughout a storm, causing the particles to charge up. Similar to connecting the positive and negative ends of a battery, a spark is created whenever negatively charged air and positively charged air from the earth contact.
This releases the accumulated energy and generates a lot of heat—lightning strikes reach temperatures of approximately 20,000 degrees Celsius.
Without the need for a channel, lightning may pass straight from the sky to the earth and will develop there. It is simpler for the charge to move to the earth if there is anything that conducts electricity, such as metal window panes, telephone lines, cable TV or internet wires, gasoline and water pipelines, power lines, and drains.
Once it locates a conductor, it may also branch out via additional ones, simultaneously electrifying several rooms in a house as it travels towards the earth.
The “side flash” phenomenon occurs when it occasionally “arcs” or jumps across the air from one conductive channel to another. For instance, lightning may strike the roof of a house’s gutters before moving on to window frames or more grounded water lines.
What Should You Do If Lightning Strikes Your House?
Probabilities suggest that a few situations may occur if lightning strikes your home. Let’s go through what you should be on the lookout for afterward.
- Ensure that nobody gets injured! In the event that someone has been hurt, get medical attention right away. If unsure, call 911.
- Search for fire-related indicators, such as smoke, burned electrical outlets, heat coming from your attic, etc.
- Check for any damage that can lead to a harmful scenario. Injury may result from a hole in the roof, dangling beams, or exposed cables.
- Look for more damage, such as burnt wiring, blown roof shingles, snapped trees, and downed electric lines.
- To ensure there is no smoke or other indications of a fire within your home, inspect attics, inspect power outlets for burn marks, and (if it is possible and the storm has gone) inspect your roof.
To be safe is the most important thing. It would be counterproductive to survive the initial assault just to put oneself in danger later.
For more information on what you should do if lightning strikes the house, watch this video below:
As many hazardous circumstances as they may reveal themselves, lightning can also create them. The most frequent risk from a lightning strike is fire, and it can start in locations that are difficult to identify or avoid identification.
Repairing Damage After Lightning
If you do experience damage, you must understand how to manage it safely. However, you must also be aware of how to prevent further damage to your house by ensuring the damage doesn’t spread or give rise to additional problems.
Here are some examples of harm and tips for lowering future issues’ likelihood.
Water damage is the most obvious possible problem here. Rain may get into the house and ruin whatever it can access, including electrical systems, drywall, and wood. If at all feasible, use a tarp to cover the hole until you can make repairs or find another temporary fix.
Shorted Electrical Systems
It’s likely that lightning produced a short or another problem with the equipment if you discover that some appliances, or even whole rooms, are not functional. There can be a far more serious electrical issue if the entire room is affected.
Be careful to turn off the electricity in any problematic locations until a professional can take a look. But following a lightning strike, exercise caution while working with fuse boxes or anything electrical. When in doubt, leave it to an electrician.
Check if there is a fire elsewhere in the home if you notice char marks or burns on walls, close to electrical outlets, or the remains of actual flames. Call the fire department if you notice smoke or have any suspicions. Check for fire damage in walls, attics, or any other area where the markings may lead after confirming there isn’t any fire.
The key point is to do what you can to secure the place and stop additional harm. Be careful not to put yourself in danger while attempting to do so! Wait for assistance from a specialist if something seems risky or even merely uncomfortable.
It is not worth preventing something if you manage to avoid a lightning strike but end yourself electrocuted while attempting to switch off your electricity.
Last, but by no means least, take photos. Record everything that could be significant to demonstrate what occurred to the appropriate parties in the next section.
Filing in an Insurance Claim After Lightning Strikes the House
The unfortunate fact is that you’ll need to submit a claim if lightning strikes your house. The good thing is that this is precisely the reason why you purchased insurance, and your agent, business, and investigator will cooperate to help you return to your pre-accident situation.
You may submit a claim as soon as you discover you are secure, and doing so is simple. Alternatively, you may wait until the following day when your mood would be better.
Inform Your Insurance Provider About the Claim
While it would be nice for your agent to learn that you are secure, you should first notify your insurance provider that you have suffered lightning damage. They are in charge of getting you the money you require for repairs or reconstruction since they are in charge of the claims department.
Inform Your Adjuster
Whatever way you wish to use to inform them, you may do it by calling, emailing, texting, or using an app. For reporting claims, some agencies even provide an online form. This would be an excellent moment to talk about the harm you’ve sustained, any threats that could still exist, and any safety tips they may have.
Stay in Touch
When your adjuster calls you back, be sure to provide them with the information they want so you can properly handle the claim. Show them every image you got of the incident so they can observe what happened and perhaps note any damaged objects that you missed.
After completing these stages, you will be close to restoring your home.
So, what should you do if lightning strikes your house? It’s normal to panic once lightning strikes your house, as the consequences can range from mild to devastating. But all is not lost, and there are things you can do to save your house and stay safe from any danger after lightning strikes.