(NC) As cottage season ramps up (and which will go full steam after the corona threat subsides) keeping your property safe from flood, hail and other severe weather is a key priority. Here are some simple steps you can take:
1. Care for your greenery. Being surrounded by nature is one of the best parts of the cottage, but not taking care of it can be dangerous.
Trim dead branches and cut down dead trees to reduce the danger of these falling onto your cabin during a storm. Dried-out branches, leaves and debris can also be a fire hazard.
2. Check the weather. If a severe storm is forecast, secure everything that might be blown around or torn loose, both indoors and outdoors. Flying objects such as Muskoka chairs, recycling bins and fishing gear can injure people and damage property.
3. Inspect your property. Make sure that your lot is properly graded so that water can drain away from any structure’s walls. Check patios, decks and driveways to make sure they haven’t settled over time and are causing water to drain toward your building.
4. Raise appliances. Raise large appliances, furnaces, hot water heaters and electrical panels up on wood or cement blocks above any potential flood water level.
If an item can’t be raised, consider anchoring it and protecting it with a floodwall or shield.
5. Prepare for rain. Check that your roof and eaves are draining properly in heavy rains and use a rain barrel to catch water runoff. You can also put weather-protection sealant around windows and the base of ground-level doors.