Beware the Witch of November - Fall Wind Safety
Winter is snowy season, spring is rainy season, but late fall is definitely known in the Midwest as the windy season. With gusts of wind sometimes comparable to those of a hurricane, we want to remind individuals to keep their essential belongings and home safe and secure from potentially devastating conditions.
The strong winds that blow across the Great Lakes in autumn are also known as the Witch of November. The “witches” are often caused by intense, low atmospheric pressure over the Great Lakes that pulls cold Canadian air from the north and warm Gulf air in from the south. When these extreme temperatures of hot and cold collide, they can result in hurricane force winds that stir up massive waves in the Lakes and send those gusts onto land. Combine the warm water with blasts of winter-like cold, and you've got the recipe for intensifying storm systems.
To help prepare for this year’s windy season, we have compiled some tips to keep you and your belongings safe and secure.
- Secure yard items before a storm. If you have cars outside of the garage, tractors, ATVs or anything large out in the open, including something like patio furniture, make sure you have a plan to secure it all. This could mean finding a place for it in storage or securing belongings with ropes to be sure they do not blow away or cause destruction.
- Cut overhanging tree limbs. Any tree that spreads its branches over your roof or over your cars could result in dangerous damages during a wind storm. Cutting down potentially hazardous tree branches could save you hassle and save your home from excessive wind damage.
- Make sure your shingles are strong enough. If you live in an area that’s prone to high winds, understand that the average shingle is not built to properly protect your home from heavy storms. Your largest investment is your home. Take the time to replace your shingles if needed to protect you and your family from unwanted destruction.
- Stock up your emergency supply kit. Heavy winds can often lead to power outages, sometimes for days at a time. This means it is important to be prepared with enough water and non-perishables in the event that power outages last longer than expected.
- Be sure that your insurance is up to date on all of your belongings.