Protecting Your Mobile Home From Mother Nature's Wrath

Industrial & Manufacturing Articles

Does it seem like the news, today, is dominated by tales of frightening weather events? Droughts, floods and violent wind storms—they seem to be more common than ever. And, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, these storms are very costly. In 2013, for example, there were nine weather events—including seven severe storms—that wreaked over $1 billion of damages each. While violent storms such as these are always frightening, they're even more terrifying when you live in a mobile home. The following are ways you, as a mobile home owner, can protect your family and your belongings against the next severe storm. 

Be Proactive

One of your best defenses against costly storm damage is to remove items that could cause potential harm to your mobile home. Several times a year, inspect the area around your property and then: 

  • Cut down any dying or dead trees that could fall on your mobile home. Also check trees for weak limbs that could break off during a storm. 
  • Consider installing an attached carport to protect your car from hailstorms. You can find these at a mobile home supply store. 
  • Inspect your mobile home's tie-downs and anchors before the storm to make sure they are secure. If your current anchors and tie-downs are inadequate or are showing signs of deterioration, you should purchase new ones. You can also find these through a mobile home supply store.  
  • Add tie-downs to any out buildings you have added to your property, such as a shed. 
  • Secure your big appliances to your walls with L-brackets.

Have a Plan in Place

In addition, you need to have a storm emergency plan in place for your family members so that everyone knows where they should go in the event of a severe storm. Unfortunately, many mobile homes aren't designed to withstand the forces of even an EF-1 tornado, so it's important to:

  • Designate a safe place to shelter. For example, if your mobile home park has a community building with a tornado shelter, have your family head to that structure in the event of a severe storm. If your park does not have a tornado shelter, ask a relative or a friend who owns a traditional home if your family can meet there.
  • Choose an out-of-state point of contact that your entire family should call in case you should become separated. After Hurricane Katrina wreaked havoc on New Orleans, many family members were unable to get in touch with each other for days, as phone coverage was spotty at best in many areas of the ravaged city. 

The Calm Before the Storm

As soon as you learn that a potentially dangerous storm is on its way or if the atmosphere is unstable and ripe for giving birth to a thunderstorm or other powerful wind storm, you should:

  • Put away any outdoor items that could turn into flying projectiles, such as lightweight patio furniture, potted plants, umbrellas and children's toys. 
  • Hunker down in an interior room without windows
  • If the weather service is calling for a tornado, head to the building you have designated as your family's emergency shelter. 

Have the Right Homeowner's Insurance

Check your options for insurance for your mobile home. In addition to basic coverage, you may also need to purchase separate policies for such things as flood or earthquake insurance as these are not typically covered under your standard policy. You may also need secondary structure coverage if you have, say, a detached workshop or garage. 

By taking these precautions, your beloved mobile home and your family will have a better chance of making it safely through the next major storm.


15 September 2014