According to the National Centers for Environmental Information, in 2014, there were eight weather and climate disaster events with losses costing billions of dollars across the United States. These events included a drought event, a flooding event, five severe storm events, and a winter storm event.
Historically, summer is an especially active season for weather-related disasters. Let’s look at the five most common weather disasters to look out for this summer:
The power of hurricanes can cause a great deal of destruction, including wind, water, and flood damage to your home. Even fire damage is possible following a hurricane thanks to the deadly combination of electrical and water hazards.
The violently whirling winds and debris carried by tornadoes pose a serious danger to your life and property. Winds in excess of 250mph can cause heavy damage to buildings, power and gas lines, trees, sewer and water infrastructure, and result in fire and flood damage in seconds. They are most common from spring through mid-summer, but can happen any time of the year when conditions are right.
With enormous destructive power, the large, 60-300 mile wide “wave trains” created by a tsunami are capable of reaching speeds of 500-600 mph and 32 feet or more in height, inflicting unimaginable flood damage to everything in their path. When a mere two inches of water can knock you off your feet or two feet can carry away most cars, the threat of tsunamis is a sobering thought, and effects the entire U.S. coast. Tsunamis result from a variety of causes, not the least of which are the Caribbean fault line, previously known for its generation of deadly tsunamis, an earthquake fault in Southern California, and a fault line stretching from Northern California to Canada - seismically identical to 2004’s catastrophic tsunami.
Water damage from floods is one of the most common and costly hazards in the U.S., and flash floods are the number one weather-related killer. Ninety percent of damage related to all natural disasters is caused by flood damage. It takes only a few inches of flood water to result in major damage to your home and its contents. With causes ranging from heavy rain to ice dams, levee failures, urbanization and fires, no one is immune to flood damage.
Increased heat waves and droughts resulting from summer temperatures pose an enormous disaster risk across the U.S. and North America. The four major causes of wildfire ignition are lightning, volcanic eruption, sparks from rock falls, and spontaneous combustion.
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