Anyone who has spent a summer in West Central Florida knows to expect a lot of thunderstorms. According to data from the World Data Center for Meteorology, Tampa has an average of 55 days during the summer with thunderstorms, with an average of 20 thunderstorms in July and 21 thunderstorms in August. The city of Tampa actually has the highest number of thunderstorms, on average, of any major city in Florida. Are these thunderstorms weather events that should concern you in terms of property damage, or are they commonplace summer incidents for which you do not need to worry about windstorm damage?
For anyone living in Sarasota or the Tampa Bay area, you might be wondering if you need to gear up for another eventful tornado season that could lead to significant property damage. But wait-does Florida actually have a tornado season? Last year around this same time, residents of West Central Florida were eagerly waiting for hurricane season to come to a close (which ends November 30 in Florida). Yet just a short time later, the Gulf Coast experienced a number of very serious storms that produced damaging tornadoes.
We have not yet reached hurricane season in Florida, but many homeowners in the Tampa Bay area were under the assumption that the dangerous weather patterns brought on by this year's El Niño had begun to dissipate. However, earlier this year-just days after the start of spring-severe storms moved into Pasco County and caused substantial wind damage to dozens of homes, according to an article in the Land O' Lakes Patch.
Given that severe storms have been impacting Florida residents in recent months and likely will continue through the winter, it is important to think about ways of protecting your home from wind storm damage. Certainly, the threat of wind damage from hurricanes is well-known to most residents of South and Central Florida. But if you own a home, you might not be thinking about bolstering your property in the hurricane off-season. According to a pamphlet from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), "the force of . . . wind alone can cause weak places in your home to fail." In other words, it is a good idea to take steps to bolster your property in the event of an unexpected severe storm with high winds.