Lightning Coverage and Safety

August 6, 2019

From blizzards to tornadoes, living in Iowa means property owners deal with an abundance of severe weather, making property insurance a necessity. Yet very few Iowans consider the danger that lightning poses. It’s important to take steps to prevent the dangerous effects of lightning to keep yourself and your family safe. Here are some things you can do.

You and your family

  • When thunder roars, go indoors. During a storm, it’s best to take shelter in a house or other fully enclosed building.
  • If you know a storm is coming, avoid known hazards and dangerous locations. These include areas where you will be the tallest object—a golf course, for example.
  • If you are caught outside in a thunderstorm, take shelter in a hard topped vehicle or a low area, such a tunnel or even a cave if necessary.
  • If you’re caught in an open field with no nearby shelter and your hair begins to stand on end, drop down into a crouch with your hands on your knees and balance on the balls of your feet.

Lightning and insurance

Your standard homeowners and business insurance policies and the comprehensive portion of an auto insurance policy typically cover damages that result from a lightning strike. Some policies also provide coverage for the damage caused by power surges. That said, it’s far better to prevent lightning damage than to have to deal with the consequences.

A lightning protection system (LPS) provides a specified path on which lightning can travel. The system safely directs the destructive power of a lightning strike into the ground, which leaves the structure of your home or business and its contents undamaged.

Lightning protection is not a “do-it-yourself” project, however. Contract a UL-listed lightning protection specialist to install the system in accordance with national safety standards. 

As you prepare your home for Iowa’s natural elements, be sure to include lightning protection on the list.