Home » Blog » Disaster Restoration » Be a Hero: Make Your Home Resistant to Natural Disasters

Be a Hero: Make Your Home Resistant to Natural Disasters

    tornado disaster kit

    Prepare Your Commercial Property for Tornado Season

    Natural disasters like floods, fires, earthquakes, and tornadoes are common in certain areas. Regardless of where you live, FEMA advises creating a preparedness plan for your household to protect yourself and your home. While no way of doing things is perfect, there are steps you can take to make your Chicagoland home more resilient to disasters.

    Know Thine Enemy

    Understand the types of hazards in the Chicago area and create a safety plan tailored to them. Local government emergency management offices can provide guidance and information on local alerts and warning systems to subscribe to. Your first concern, of course, is your family’s safety. But your home and property could also profit from sensible safeguards you put in place, whether you decide to stay or go when disaster strikes.

    Sun Tzu, a Chinese military general, strategist, and philosopher once said, “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” You are not helpless against these mighty forces. Once you know your enemy, you’ll better know what steps to take.

    FEMA: Cook County, Illinois Disaster Risk Index
    FEMA: Cook County, Illinois Disaster Risk Index


    Defeat Your Enemy

    Knowledge is power, so be a hero and use the following information effectively.

    Fire Safety

    1. To prevent gas leaks from causing fires after natural disasters, learn to shut off your home’s natural gas with the help of your gas company. If you smell gas, open windows and leave immediately. Find and close shut-off valves completely to prevent water pollution from cracked pipes after disasters. Check for rust periodically. Wait for authorities to give the all-clear before reopening the valve.
    2. To prevent electrical fires, locate your circuit box and turn off individual circuits before shutting down the main one to avoid sparks. If you rely on life-saving equipment, consider getting a portable generator as a backup plan.
    3. Ensure you have fire and carbon dioxide detectors in your home. For protection against fast-moving fires, focus on creating defensible spaces and using fire-resistant construction materials. Consult your local Chicago area fire department for specific steps based on your home’s characteristics.

    Commercial Fire Damage Restoration - Chicago


    Tornado Safety

    1. According to FEMA, the Chicago Metro area has a tornado risk score of 99.97 out of 100. Protect your home by meeting or exceeding the Standard Building Code for high-wind areas. Secure windows and glass doors with impact-resistant glass. Ensure doors have three hinges and strong deadbolt locks. Strengthen garage doors. Consider an inspection for recommendations on reinforcing your home. Plan a shelter location for your family.
    2. To protect against tornadoes, focus on roof safety. Use sturdy materials, fix damaged sheathing, secure trusses/rafters to walls, seal joints with asphalt tape, and brace gable roof end walls and connections.
    3. Tornadoes and strong winds can cause trees to fall and damage your property. Regularly check for dead or weak trees and remove them. Prune tree branches annually and secure loose items in your yard. Consider using shredded bark instead of gravel for landscaping.

    Earthquake Safety

    Many parts of the U.S. are earthquake-prone. While the Chicago area isn’t likely to see one, a few smaller ones have occurred over the years. However, the U.S. Geological Survey states, “Earthquakes can occur in any location at any time.” So, protect your home by securing appliances and heavy furniture to walls, and installing latches on cabinets and drawers. Use closed screw-eyes for hanging paintings. Reinforce your home’s structure with steel plates and anchor bolts and fortify walls and chimneys.

    Flood Safety

    Make sure your home is protected from flooding by knowing its flood level. Keep electrical devices and appliances above this point. Secure items that could cause contamination if they float during a flood and install a back-flow valve to safeguard the sewage system.



    When the Enemy Causes Damage

    The information and tips provided in the article are designed to limit the amount of damage your property suffers. But sometimes your best efforts to be a protector aren’t enough to stop major damage from occurring. When it does, call the Chicagoland disaster restoration professionals at ServiceMaster By Simons. We make sure that any damage incurred is only temporary and will return your property to normal before you know it.


    Choose ServiceMaster Restoration by Simons, Chicago’s #1 trusted disaster restoration company.


    • Sam Simon

      Sam Simon is a very accomplished individual. He is gifted in the areas of creativity and operations - managing and directing restoration of large commercial losses to the every day residential water damage. He recently achieved the coveted title of Master Restorer by the IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification) after countless hours of classroom training & education. Sam is knowledgeable on a vast range of disaster restoration topics from water damage/flooding, mold remediation to advanced drying, fire & smoke restoration, and specialty cleaning (carpet and upholstery). Given Sam's background in the television industry as a videographer and cameraman, he lends a creative flair to the company's strategy marketing planning efforts and is well regarded in the restoration industry.

      About ServiceMaster Restoration By Simons
      Restoration By Simons is an MBE/WBE certified firm and family-run company serving both Cook and Lake County, Illinois. Recently, the company was awarded a variety of honors, including the SB100 Best of Small Business Award Winner 2021, Bronze Stevie® Award in the Female Entrepreneur of the Year category in the 18th annual Stevie Awards for Women in Business, recipient of the 2020 Better Business Bureau's Torch Award for Marketplace Ethics, and the recipient of the 2020 Skokie Business of the Year Award, Honorable Mention Category. Restoration By Simons provides disaster restoration services including water and flood damage restoration, fire and smoke damage restoration, mold remediation, to residential and commercial customers in both Cook and Lake County IL.

      LinkeIn Profile
      Facebook Profile

      View all posts