Gauteng residents were recently issued with a storm warning, signalling the start of the highveld’s
summer storm season.
After a dry winter period, crops have been left bone dry and dam levels at the Vaal are reported to be sitting on much lower levels compared to this time last year.
That said, some heavy downpour across the region will come as a much-needed relief to farmers and residents, who have been urged to use water sparingly.
The rainy season can however bring with it some unwanted side-effects, such as flash floods and hail damage.
While it’s impossible to change the weather, we can still protect our belongings as much as possible, and make sure they will be replaced through adequate insurance if damaged.
Standard Bank Insurance Limited offers advice that may help to keep you and your property safe should you find yourself in the path of the coming storms:
Keep an eye on weather information and warnings via TV, radio or social media
Ensure electrical equipment is disconnected from sockets during storms to avoid electrical-surge damage
Check that roofs do not have broken or loose tiles that will allow the entry of water
Check your property for any loose material and tie down (or fill with water) all large, relatively light items, such as boats and rubbish bins
Ensure that roof gutters are clean and unclogged, so water does not seep onto ceilings
Keep house windows shut to prevent them being hit by hail or shattered by high winds
Have an emergency kit ready. It should include your ID and some cash, a torch, sturdy gloves, fresh water, a portable radio, three days’ worth of non-perishable food and a can opener, medication and a power bank.
If you’re driving, the insurance provider suggests the following:
Ensure your vehicles' fuel tanks are full
Reduce speed and increase following distance to a three-car distance
Turn headlights on so you can be seen by other motorists
If you can, pull off the road safely and activate your car’s hazard lights
Don’t park under trees, as there is a risk of falling branches and debris
Ensure windscreen wipers are in good condition, so they can cope with sudden downpours
Never get out of your vehicle, because of possible injury from hailstones
Don’t attempt to drive through water washing across the road, or across low-water bridges; it requires only about 15cm of rapidly moving water to wash away a car.
For the ability to submit a claim quickly and easily, there is a function on the Standard Bank mobile app that will assist in managing the process. Alternatively, contact Standard Insurance Limited on:
0860 123 444 for structural or building claims; or