Do you live in a hurricane-prone area? If so, you probably look at hurricane season each year with some degree of trepidation. While a storm might not strike your area (and unless you live on an island, the chances are better that you won't be affected than you will), you need to be prepared. If you do get on the unlucky side of the weather and a storm hits your area, it could cause significant damage to your house if you haven't prepared it ahead of time. There are plenty of things you can do to the house itself that will make it safer during a storm. However, you shouldn't forget the yard.
Here are three things you can do to your yard to make your house safer during a hurricane.
1. Make Your Yard Furniture and Decorations Secure
If you have things in your yard like lawn furniture or garden statuary, you have a hazard during a storm. Those things could be picked up by a strong wind and go flying, breaking your windows or causing injuries to people or pets who happen to be outside when the storm hits. You need to make sure they are secure so they don't become projectiles if a hurricane comes through your area.
If you can bring something inside before the storm hits, do it. Whatever is out of the wind won't become a dangerous object flying through it. Pile things up in your garage if you have to, just get anything inside that can be moved.
If you have something that is too big to be moved, such as large, heavy lawn furniture, a hot tub, a giant grill, or even a boat in a nearby lake, river, or marina, tie it down and make sure it is as secure as possible. Use stakes driven into the ground and ropes or plastic tie line (or anchors, for boats) to give these things the best shot of staying in place in a storm.
2. Remove Dangerous Trees
One of the biggest hazards in your yard during a hurricane is a sketchy tree. Any tree that is large and too close to your house, has big branches that grow over your house, is damaged by termites, or dead and brittle is a potential danger to your home and the people inside it. Even a strong wind that is part of a normal thunderstorm could make a tree like this a problem.
You need to take stock of the trees in your yard and determine their potential danger to your home. You don't want a large branch to fall on your roof or an entire tree to come crashing down onto your house.
If there are any potential danger trees, you need to call a tree removal service to get rid of them. If the entire tree doesn't need to be removed, the tree removal service can get rid of dangerous branches, too.
3. Disconnect Any Propane Tanks and Turn Them Off
According to RedCross.org, you should turn off outdoor propane tanks before a hurricane. Disconnecting them from the house if possible is also a good idea. The purpose of turning off the propane tanks is to make sure they aren't in a position to explode and cause a fire or other damage to your house if they are hit by a projectile during the storm, or if they are affected by a power surge.
Being prepared for a hurricane is important to ensure the safety of you, your family, and your pets. While preparing your house is crucial, you must not neglect your yard. There are hazards there, too. Take care of them, and your house will be as safe as it can possibly be during the worst of hurricanes in your area.
Check out sites like http://www.prtree.com for more info on tree removal.