The Met Service has issued a severe weather warning for a major winter storm over the South Island through to Friday, 19 June 2015. Strong winds, heavy rain and snow are forecast for some areas.
IAG advises drivers in affected areas to take extra caution, and to check the NZTA’s website for local road hazards before heading out.
With the weather warnings we are facing, here are some tips to help keep safe and minimise damage to your prized posessions:
Cars and driving
- Move your car into your garage, or at least to a covered area, when thunderstorms or hail are forecast. Good protection for your car – and it makes it easier for you if you are getting to or from your vehicle.
- If a hailstorm occurs while you are driving, make sure you slow down as the reduced visibility and distraction of hail, as well as hail causing a rapid deterioration in road conditions, all contribute to a greater likelihood of accidents. Nose-to-tail accidents are common and reduced speed, as well as keeping drivers and their passengers safer, greatly reduces the risk of accident or the extent of damage should an accident occur.
Around the home
- Secure or move indoors any loose objects from around your garden, including sun shades, deck chairs or potted plants. Close any sun canopies.
- Find out whether your blinds or shutters should remain open or be closed. Some tend to be more delicate than glass windows.
- As fascinating as storms are, you are well advised to watch them from indoors: if you cannot make it to the house, try to avoid being close to trees. Broken branches could hurt or injure you and of course, lightning is extremely dangerous.
- After the storm: Check your vehicle and/or house for any damage and report it to your insurance company.
- For a more technical discussion on how your insurance responds to driving in severe weather, see our earlier blog post about safe driving in heavy rain and flooding.