We are currently in the middle of one of the hottest summers on record, and not just in Myrtle Beach but all over the country. The high heat and humidity along the Grand Strand have brought plenty of thunderstorms. While the downpours often provide a brief respite from the heat, accompanying high winds and lightning can cause damage to homes, roads and power grids. A little preparation and simple precautions can help you weather some of the smaller storms prevalent during this time of year.
It is important to distinguish the difference between a summer thunderstorm and a hurricane warning or watch. If there is a threat of severe weather, your immediate concern should be the physical safety of you and your family. The Emergency Management Division of Horry County provides helpful tools, starting with knowing the emergency evacuation route for your zone in the county. They also provide a helpful Family Disaster Plan worksheet and a bulleted list of things to do before, during and after a hurricane.
Perhaps one of the most obvious and important is to have an emergency kit that contains the following: flashlights, batteries, bottled water, dried or canned food, first aid supplies and a battery-operated radio. Have this kit in an easy access area that you could find in the dark.
If you are at home when the electricity goes out, and it is a non-emergency situation, there are a few things you can do to minimize the inconvenience of a home without power:
-Turn off appliances in your home to protect them from a power surge when the power comes back on and prevent an overload to the electrical system in your home. You can easily turn off your HVAC units from the breaker box in your home.
-Keep food in your refrigerator and freezer cool by keeping the doors closed.
-If it is summer, keep doors, windows and blinds closed and wait out the outage in the coolest room of your home
Once power is restored, it is safe to turn your HVAC system and appliances back on.
If you suspect damage from lightning or a power surge, Cooper Mechanical Services are on call to help.