Biggest mistake putting your home at risk in storms
ONE of the biggest mistakes residents make during the severe storm season is not clearing out their gutters.
Warwick State Emergency Service local controller John Newley said blocked gutters were a major reason volunteers were called to properties in the region.
"I've seen trees growing out of gutters," Mr Newley said.
"Water can't run away so it'll run on the eaves and the inside wall of the house.
"People usually have power- point fittings in the walls and it's quite dangerous and can create mould."
Mr Newley said volunteers could not respond to properties during a storm, because they were prohibited from being in an area where there was lightning present.
This meant if a house had blocked gutters and water was creeping in, the SES could not help until the storm passed.
"It doesn't matter if we put a tarp on the house, it's already too late," Mr Newley said.
He said blocked gutters also posed a significant risk for rural properties during fire season.
"If you had an ember attack from the fire, once it's in the gutters and gets into the roof it's nearly all over at that stage," he said.
Securing loose items around the property was also important, he said adding trampolines could roll down a street in storms.
In a storm at Killarney, a trampoline crashed into equipment and caused half of the town to be blacked out.
"Trampolines and things can turn into missiles - make sure they're secured quite well," Mr Newley said.
"It could strike somebody who's out in the garden."
Mr Newley also urged residents not to try to move fallen powerlines but to call 000 if they spotted fallen lines.
If you need help in a storm, phone 132500.