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Lightning Doesn't Get the Credit it Deserves

Some people love a good storm. Lightning lighting up the sky, roll of thunder and the smell of rain. Then there are some of us (some may call us a wee-wee,) who prefer no bad weather at all and hide under the blankets during a storm. There are some of us that may or may not have a storm shelter set up in our basements with food for the next 90 days, you know... just in case. No matter which type of person you might be, the risk of damage from lightning and storms does not discriminate. Everyone/thing is at risk during a storm.

Lightning doesn't get the credit it deserves. In an article posted by the LPI (Lightning Protection Institute posted 4/29/2024) fires caused by lightning strikes cause 3 - 5% of all U.S. Commercial insurance claims causing billions annually in covered payouts to small and medium sized businesses. As the executive director for LPI stated, the potential consequences such as business interruption, loss of revenue and damage to reputation can be devastating to a business.


"Lightning strikes about 100 times every second" stated the executive director in the same article. That's a lot of chances for a loss to happen. There is the potential for damage to property, downtime/shut down and even injuries from a lightning strike. Being aware of the potential risks and knowing what you could do to prevent a loss needs to be a high priority for any business owner.


Let's look at other issues that could arise by a lightning strike and what you could possibly do to prevent a loss at your establishment. These are only a few of the possible risks from lightning.


Fire - As I mentioned, this is the first concern most people associate with a lightning strike. A fire can cause complete destruction of your business, home, personal or business personal property and possibility of loss of life.


Power Surges - Another issue we see with lightning is power surges. A power surge has the potential to short circuit appliances, communication devices and other things used in the scope of daily life causing everything to stop immediately. For example - a lightning strike could cause a power outage, causing the refrigerator system to shut down in a restaurant. This could cause a complete operation shut down until they could get it fixed/repaired.


Downed Trees - Lightning can strike any object, including a tree. A broken tree limb alone could cause significant damage to property, let alone if the entire tree were to fall on your business. Perhaps in that same storm I used as an example in the power surge above, a lightning strike caused a tree to fall on the roof of their establishment. We are now talking weeks (or more) of repairs before they are back up and running. Which means loss of income, total business interruption and possibly complete closure. How do they cover the loss in a situation like that? Hopefully they have a great agent that put the proper coverage(s) in force.


Electrocution - Although the likelihood of being struck by lightning is slim, it does happen. On the National Library of Medicine's website, in an article they posted on 7/17/23, they state that although it is impossible to know exactly it is estimated, worldwide there are approximately 24,000 fatalities, with ten times as many injuries annually due to lightening.


How can you protect your business from losing income, property or other damages from lightning? You could install a lightening protection system to reduce the risk of damage to a structure, systems/appliances and the people inside. A system such as this, along with surge protectors can be designed and installed to reduce the risk.


You will want to make sure to talk to your agent. What coverage(s) are available to cover some of these potential losses? Do you have income loss protection? Is it an option? Do you have the right coverage(s) in place to protect your building and property inside? These are all questions we would love to answer for you! Give us a call. Let's make sure you are protected.

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