Your Severe Weather Response Tool Guide for Tornadoes & Hurricanes: What You’ll Need After the Storm

Each year, tornadoes and hurricanes leave a wake of destruction in their paths. How much damage do they do? Tornadoes alone do about $400 million in damage each year across the United States, and in 2018 and 2019, hurricanes caused a combined total of $136 billion in damage. You know that if your home or business has been in the vicinity of a tornado or hurricane’s powerful forces, it can involve a great deal of cleanup to get things back to normal.

There’s nothing we can do to control the weather, but we can do something when it’s over. Downed trees, power outages, and flooding all need to be addressed quickly. So here are some tools (pun intended) to help you out. But seriously, here are some tools that’ll help.

Get Back to the Grind After a Power Outage

Having a plan in place to deal with the damage can be helpful. Many businesses and homes require power– to keep food in coolers from spoiling, to protect medical supplies, to use for fans or water remediation tools, or to stay connected. A generator can keep the lights on and keep you going if your building has been affected by severe-weather-related power outages.

It can be challenging to know what size generator to use, especially because you want to spend only what’s necessary on fuel if you have to pay for other repairs. However, you still want to find a generator that can handle your essential power needs.

Northside Tool Rental has generators available in various wattages, so you only have to fuel a generator that matches your needs. A 2,000-watt quiet generator, for example, may be perfect to power a fridge, run a few lights, and charge a cell phone, but for more power, you may require a 3,000-watt quiet generator to power 110-volt items with standard 2- or 3-pronged plugs.

Larger homes or businesses with additional needs after a storm may find that they need stronger generators, which is why we have 7,000-watt quiet generators that can power 120-volt and 240-volt items and usually power an entire household. You can even rent a 25,000-watt generator, which runs on diesel fuel and can ensure continuous operation after a storm for 40 hours at full load, to keep you going after a storm.

Deal with Downed Trees

Georgia recorded 60 tornadoes in 2019, and even though Hurricane Michael was downgraded to a Category 3 storm in 2018, it still downed plenty of trees and powerlines as it traveled along the coast.

While a significant tornado may reach 157 miles per hour (mph), still others can reach strengths of 260mph or more, which is enough to uproot trees and push houses off of their foundation.

If winds have knocked down branches and trees in your yard you could just leave them there and pretend you live in the forest, but we wouldn’t recommend it. So what tools should you consider to make the job easier?

First, you’ll need a chainsaw to separate limbs and tackle trees so they are a more manageable, moveable size. You can use gas-powered chainsaws (of which we have 20-inch and 28-inch models available), or even a 16-inch battey-powered chainsaw for smaller jobs. How do you know which size you need? Double the barr size to determine how much you can cut. A 20-inch chainsaw can handle a downed tree that’s 40 inches in diameter.

Of course, all of this wood has to go somewhere. And unless you’re going to build some sort of backyard fort with it, a limb chipper is a valuable option. Our small limb chipper can cut through stray branches and limbs up to 3-inches thick and is a great option for smaller downed branches scattered about your yard. If you have a bigger job on your hands, you may want to consider our larger limb chipper, which can take on limbs that are 6-7 inches in diameter.

Where does all of this cut and chipped wood go? If you have an especially large cleanup job, don’t try to transport it all by hand, that would take forever. Rent a loader to clear away the debris. This skid steer loader is perfect for packed dirt or hard surfaces, and if you have limbs, cut wood, and sticks throughout your yard, you’ll want to rent this track loader with wide tracks that can handle softer, muddier terrain so you can complete the clean-up job with ease.

Dry Out After a Flood

With hurricanes, tornadoes, and other severe weather events, there’s bound to be a major accumulation of rain. In 2018 Hurricane Florence was projected to drop up to 18 trillion gallons of rain across the region. You need a way to tackle the water that collects in your basement, your carpets, and anywhere else water tends to accumulate. Otherwise you’re looking at a Waterworld situation, and that was a terrible movie.

Left unchecked, flood water can do a lot of damage, so you need to act fast. Even just a few inches of water can become costly to repair. When water seeps into your home after a flood, you need dehumidifiers and carpet dryers to curtail the damage. We understand that water damage is stressful and frustrating, which is why we have these tools available for you to rent when disaster strikes.

Whether you need a contractor-grade dehumidifier for drying out large areas, our dehumidifier can help. It’s perfect for quick drying in damp environments. And when your carpet is soggy? Don’t use regular box fans. Our carpet fans specifically target the ground-level and can dry out even the dampest of carpets.

At Northside Tool Rental, we know that natural disasters like tornadoes and hurricanes can leave us all feeling like we’re out of control. We have the tools you need to control the mess. If you have questions about what tools will best serve you during the clean-up after a severe weather event, we’ve got the knowledge and experience to help. Contact us today to get the guidance and the expertise you need!