Occasionally, we southern Marylanders encounter a hailstorm. Let’s discuss what causes hail and its impact.
What is and what causes hail?
Often round in shape, hail is layered ice particles produced by thunderstorms with strong, tilted updrafts. They usually form within a unusually unstable air mass in which the temperature falloff with height is much greater than normal. The unstable air is required to create large updraft speeds -- fast enough to keep a developing hailstone from hitting the ground.
- Hailstorms are the identifier of a strong thunderstorm.
- The eventual size of the hail depends on how long they can defeat gravity.
- Hail size depends on the strength of the updraft.
- The bigger the hail balls are, the harder they fall.
- The largest hailstone ever recorded was the size of a volleyball.
- Hail causes $1 billion in damage each year with millions of ice balls ranging in size from golf balls to grapefruits.
- Oklahoma is the large hail champion in the United States.
Regardless of the type of storm, we recommend:
- Check your surroundings and make sure you are safe.
- Contact your insurance company.
- Inspect the roof and exterior siding.
- Check other outside structures
- Inspect your home’s appliances
- Check the attic, crawlspaces and basement.
- Document any and all damage.
In the event of an emergency, we are here to help and available 24 x 7. Call SERVPRO of Charles County and SERVPRO of Oxon Hill 24/7/365 Emergency Services at 301-753-8313.