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storm damage emergency!

What to do if a tree falls on your roof?

Storms bring rain, hail, and damaging winds that can rip up shingles, tear off pipe caps, and leave your home in a state of disarray when the sun comes back. Unfortunately, those damaging winds can also bring tornados that pull and push at trees and send them toppling. Whether you love or hate thunderstorms, no one wants to deal with the aftermath of tornado-like winds. When a tree is pulled at the roots, broken, or a large limb falls, it can damage your roof, and in some severe cases, come through the roof. This is a scary thing and while we hope it never happens to our customers, we want you to be prepared if a tree falls on your roof.

Plan For Emergencies. 

If the storm is strong enough to take down trees, there will likely be power outages and other damages. Here are a few things you can do to plan ahead. 

  • Designate a shelter area in your home, preferably in a basement, cellar, or interior room without windows.
  • Make sure everyone knows where to go. Practice sheltering with your family. 
  • Stock your shelter with a first aid kit, snacks, water, flashlights, blankets, and other necessities. 
  • Save the phone number for your gas/electric provider so you can report outages and downed powerlines without the need for internet. 
  • Trim trees around your home every 2-5 years to keep debris away from your roof and remove any dead/dying trees near your home.
  • Have your roof inspected every spring and autumn. While this won’t stop a disaster, it can minimize the damages if a tree falls on your roof.

On or Through?

If a tree or large branch falls on your home it can either land on top of your roof or crash through your roof. In either case, you should call 911 immediately and evacuate your home as soon as it is safe! The weight and structural damage caused by a fallen tree can cause your home’s structure to give out and parts of the house to collapse. If it isn’t safe to go outside and you know where the tree has fallen, you and your family should move to the opposite side of the home. If it is safe to leave the home, evacuate to a neighbor’s or a family member’s house. Take any animals that live with you out of the residence as well. Once professionals have cleared the residence as safe to be inside, then you may re-enter.

tree falls on your roof

But be cautious! In addition to the structural damage caused to your home, the tree could also take down power lines. Be careful where you step, avoid downed lines, and contact NIPSCO to report the outage and get their crews working on it. Once help is on its way, you’ll want to speak to your insurance company and take pictures as soon as you can.

removing fallen tree

Damage Control.

You and your family are safe and the storm has passed. Now what? Firstly, do not go up to the roof and attempt to tarp off the area or handle the tree yourself. This is not safe. Because of the weight and balance of the tree, you could end up falling through your roof, or the tree could shift and injure you. Leave it to the professionals! Take pictures, file a claim with your insurance provider, and call a tree service company. A tree service can come with equipment to safely remove the tree for you. They will have an entire crew and tools to effectively remove the tree from your home. When choosing a tree company, request to see their proof of insurance and a quote before allowing them to start. Once the tree is cleared, contact a professional roofing contractor to repair your roof.

How long clean up and damage control takes will depend on the amount of damage and the possibility of other damaged homes in the area. Storm season can bring a lot of work for eletrical, tree service, and roofing companies. It’s possible that you’ll have a wait time for removing the tree and fixing your roof. Hopefully this will be something covered under your insurance, and you’ll be able to stay somewhere in the meantime.

Contact a Professional Roofing Contractor

Storm season can be difficult and stressful, especially if you’ve been affected by damaging winds. Thankfully, Clayton Hoover and Sons has helped the South Bend area through countless storm seasons. As soon as the tree is cleared, we’ll make it a priority to tarp over your roof and get you on the schedule for a new roof. And with expert experience that goes beyond roofing, we can handle whatever damage the storm brought to your home. If a tree falls on your roof or damaging winds tear through your home, we’ll make sure your home is safe, sturdy, and looking sharp with new shingles, siding, windows, and more. Contact today for a free estimate and get your home back on track.

blue tarp over side of asphalt roof