Time to get ready for monsoons
Season officially starts June 15, with a chance of rain already on tap
Are you ready for monsoon season? It officially starts June 15, which is almost here.
A monsoon occurs when there’s a seasonal shift in wind patterns, which in turn bring a change in moisture conditions, reacting with the summer heat. In Yuma County, monsoons can involve high winds, sudden rainstorms, flooding, extreme heat and rolling dust clouds.
And thanks to Hurricane Bud churning off the coast of Mexico, the National Weather Service reports that deep monsoon moisture will move into the state this weekend, bringing a slight chance of thunderstorms to the Yuma area. So what should you do if a monsoon strikes? The first factor to weigh is the rain. Yuma County, especially in the rural areas, is filled with washes, which quickly fill when monsoons hit. Don’t drive through flooded areas, and if visibility is bad, pull over and wait it out. Should you see a downed power line, stay away from it, and call 911.
There are two things you can do to prepare for the rain and be ahead of the curve. The first is simple — make sure your windshield wipers are in good working order, and not dry-rotted from the sun. Also, inspect your property, and make sure that your roof is in good shape, which is especially important when that rain comes down.
The second factor to weigh during monsoon season are the dust storms. Should you encounter one while driving, pull over, turn off the taillights and headlights, put the vehicle in park, and wait it out, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.
A final factor at play is the wind. Those monsoon winds can cause a variety of damage, not to mention blowing patio cushions and furniture right out of the yard. If a storm is blowing in, make sure to walk your property and secure any items that might blow away or cause damage.
And after the storm passes, give your property one more walk-through, to check for any damage.
In case of monsoon storms, it’s recommended that families keep a disaster supply kit on hand, just in case of emergency. The kit should be able to keep a family sustained for at least three days, with food, water, clothing, first aid supplies, medications and battery-operated radio and flashlights.
We never know when a dangerous monsoon storm will strike in Yuma. Sometimes, we simply get some extra humidity, while other times, homes lose roofs and trees are uprooted all over the city.
A few moments of preparation before the season begins, however, can help keep you and your family safe during the worst of monsoon season. Unsigned editorials represent the viewpoint of this newspaper rather than an individual. Columns and letters to the editor represent the viewpoints of the persons writing them and do not necessarily represent the views of the Yuma Sun.