This time of year brings the threats of violent thunderstorms, tornadoes and hurricanes to the United States. Are you ready for them? Here are some basic precautions.
1. Uninterruptible Power Supplies
Storms of all kinds knock down power lines and can even knock power plants off line. Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS) allow your computers to shut down gracefully, giving you time to save and close programs. They also protect your computers with built-in surge protectors.
2. Surge Protectors
For your plugged in electronics that are not on a UPS, use high quality power strips that are also surge protectors. When lighting and falling branches strike electrical power lines, power surges can flash through the lines and into your office and home wiring. Surge protectors can block the majority of these spikes, but not the biggest ones.
3. Unplug Computers and Electronics
When very severe storms are approaching, it is safest to disconnect your computers and electronics from power outlets and cable connections. A nearby lightning strike can overwhelm UPS devices and fry sensitive electronics.
4. Cloud Backups
To guard against the worst consequences of violent storms, nightly cloud backups of all your important data and files are essential. If you haven't experienced the loss of even one day's files, you may not appreciate how disruptive and time-consuming those events are.
5. Personal Safety
Don't take chances with approaching storms. During stormy times, check the weather frequently. Forecasts can change rapidly. If you need to leave the office or leave home, do so well in advance of approaching bad weather. Identify the safest place in your building and be ready to shelter there.
As our climate changes, we need to be ready for more frequent and more violent storms. Take these precautions to minimize the likelihood of the consequences.