MORAINE, Ohio (WDTN) — You hear the siren, get indoors, but what should you do if your home is damaged or destroyed?
Once the threat has passed, if you are trapped, cover your mouth from breathing dust, and send a text or make as much noise as possible. If you are able to get out, you should do it carefully.
Marita Salkowski, Regional Communications Director for the American Red Cross Central and Southern Ohio said, “Tornadoes damage the infrastructure of homes. And so just because the home is partially standing or there is a wall up that may go down very quickly with any kind of movement. So you want to make sure that you’re very, very cautious as you exit your home.”
With any damage, there will be debris spread out, but the most dangerous is invisible, natural gas.
Salkowski said, “You want to avoid any kind of open flames in those situations. You know, don’t use lighters or matches. Make sure that you always have a flashlight in your emergency kit.”
When you make it out of your home, make sure everyone in the family is ok, check for damage around your property and document it.
Rick Wyatt, Owner of Wyatt Insurance Group said, “Take good photos, see if there is any damage you can keep, protect your house from further damage.”
Any expenses related to securing your home should be documented.
Keep your receipts if you go ahead and proceed to do that so they can be reimbursed during the claims process with your insurance company.
Wyatt said that you should have your policy number and claims phone number on hand before severe weather strikes, and that you should get a call within 48 hours of your claim.