June kicks off summer and lightning season. Lightning Safety Week, June 22-28, is designed to help us understand lightning and danger it possesses. Although summer is the preferred season for lightning, lightning occurs all year long and is accountable for over 50 deaths and hundreds of injuries per year. As one of the deadliest and least understood weather pneumonia’s most of us are not concerned with the potential lightning has.
Lightning is a spark of electricity in the atmosphere or between the atmosphere and the ground. As a storm progresses, air acts as an insulator to the different charges in the cloud and between the cloud and ground. When the difference in the charges becomes too great, there is a rapid discharge of electricity, lightning.
Thunder and lightning go hand-in-hand but the two serve very different purposes. As lightning passes through the air, the air is heated. This heat makes the air expand and creates a sound wave, thunder. Thunder is the sound made by the flash of lightning, lightning is the rapid release of electricity because of the charge difference during a storm.
Florida is ranked number one in Cloud-to-Ground flash densities by state, with 1,235,540 flashes of lightning per year and 21.6 flashes per square mile. You can hear thunder roughly 10 miles from a lightning strike. Lightning can also strike 10 miles outward of a storm, so if you hear thunder you are within striking distance of a storm.
With Florida’s density of lightning flashes, insurance companies are now validating lightning strikes in Florida using the lightning strike data archives launched by The Weather Network. With lightning strikes responsible for over $5 billion in homeowner insurance claims annually, finding actual ways of defining lightning caused damage has become increasingly important in the insurance industry.
The traditional investigation methods used by insurance adjusters are subjective and rely on human interpretation; which made the lightning insurance claim conclusion questionable or unreliable. There are more advanced and dependable methods of validating lightning activity, such as pinpoint accuracy verification reports. The only downfall of these verification reports is the reduction of on-site inspections.
If you have filed or need to file a lightning related insurance claim, make sure you have an experienced public adjuster reviewing your claim. The public adjusters at Advocate Claims have extensive knowledge and experience in lightning related insurance claims. Call 1-954-369-0573 today to speak with a public adjuster about your claim or contact us online!