The rapid onset of a monsoon storm can change weather and road conditions instantly, placing homeowners in precarious situations. Damage to the community and personal property ranges from severe to “it passed right around us.” This year’s monsoon season has brought blinding dust storms that would rival any New England snow driven white out. Last year, hail damage in the southern states, including the desert, caused insurance claims to escalate, and some claims are still not settled. Flat roof and foam roof buildings were beaten, windows were blown out, vehicles pitted, and landscape destroyed. Mother Nature has had quite a flair for the dramatic!
Slopes were washed out and roads undermined as a result of flash floods. Managers need to address these conditions quickly as they lead to structural damage. It is best practice to hire a qualified Engineer to assess the damaged area. While asphalt and concrete companies are equipped to make repairs, only an Engineer is qualified to evaluate the load damage in specific cases such as washed out roads, slopes, damage to rip rap, culverts, header walls and erosion areas. Equally important are playground areas which will need to be inspected for wash out around the footings of all equipment. Consult with a qualified professional.
Heavy dust storms deposit silt and grit throughout machinery and outdoor equipment. Check all pumps, motors, pool areas, outdoor fountains, and HVAC equipment. Check any vehicles engines for dirt and all windows for damage caused by blowing debris.
Examine all structures, outdoor equipment including picnic and playground areas and antennas for stress caused by wind shear. Check pool lifeguard stands, wooden poles, canopy covers, flag poles, ramadas, and items that are designed to sway or bend.
Contact a local professional landscape company or arborist to examine all plant material, especially shallow rooted trees.
It is a recommended best practice to document all damage to your community property with photographs. Contact your community Insurance professional for assistance in filing disaster claims. As a Professional Community, you should keep a log of your activity and time spent managing the aftermath of a monsoon.