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Hurricane Precautions in Florida

How are electrical storms generated?

Thunderstorms form when hot, humid air rises to find cold air. As this humid air rises, water vapor condenses, forming huge cumulonimbus clouds which are responsible for these storms.

The state of Florida has an average of 2.92 million lightning strikes to the ground per year, followed by Texas with an average of 1.17 million lightning strikes between 2009 and 2019. In addition, Florida ranks first in ground lightning per square mile with an average of 20.4.

According to data collected by Betsy Crips of the University of Florida, the large number of thunderstorms and lightning deaths in this state is due to a combination of high humidity, high temperatures and their location between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. For this reason the state of Florida has the title of the U.S. lightning capital with thunderstorms 100 days a year.

Despite this unavoidable natural phenomenon, many pool owners in the city of Doral and Miami Dade County complain that their pool has not been properly serviced due to rain, and the pool technician will not perform any lost tasks again until the next regular service.

Even when someone wants to work during the rain, OSHA regulations are the reason pool technicians can’t use any pool equipment to brush, scrape and vacuum any pool during the rain and least of all during an electrical storm.

John Jensenius, a NOAA lightning expert, says the only safe places to be during a storm are in a building with four walls and a roof or in a car. A cabin, tent and other places to protect yourself from the rain don’t protect you from lightning.

June is the month of hurricanes, for this reason we have brought you a series of steps that can help you keep your house, patio and pool safe.

  • Under no circumstances should you take the water out of your pool before a storm, the empty pool can suffer structural damage.
  • Do not immerse objects in the pool as these can damage the pool’s finish, such as objects or furniture that are made of metal as they can corrode in the water and generate rust stains that are very difficult to remove.
  • Never turn on pool equipment after a storm, especially if the pool is flooded. Wait for the pool technician to turn them on. The pump must be completely dry before turning it on.
  • Check the drainage areas of the pool
  • To avoid flooding, you should check all drainage areas, drains, and returns of the pool and remove any debris that may clog them.
  • Clean gutters of leaves and branches, check where the water runs to see that they are not blocked.
  • Inspect your roof and check that all shingles are attached, otherwise they could fall into the pool, your yard or perhaps a window.
  • Put away all the tools, decorations and furniture in your yard, big or small, any loose object can become a projectile.
  • Turn off your patio’s automatic sprinkler system to prevent it from activating after the storm, causing your patio to flood.
  • Check your trees to see if roots and branches are rotting, cut off dead branches. If you have a dead tree, it should be removed because it could be thrown into your house or the pool by the storm.

If you want more tips to protect your home in this hurricane season we recommend you read the following post:

How do I prepare my pool for a hurricane?

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