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What should you do after Tuesday's storms in North Texas?

More than 500,000 people were without power in the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area on Tuesday morning after a series of severe thunderstorms with high winds swept through the area.

Many North Texans were awakened by the sound of tornado sirens early Tuesday morning after the National Weather Service issued a tornado warning for parts of the region until 6:30 a.m. A flash flood warning was extended into later in the day.

As many people struggle with power outages and assess the damage to their property, here are some helpful tips to help you cope with the aftermath of the storms.

How to report a claim

Storm repairs can be expensive, so it's important to protect your property and report any damage.

Most standard home insurance policies cover damage from weather events as long as you pay the deductible. Here are the steps you can take to report the damage, according to the Texas Department of Insurance, which regulates the claim settlement process in the state.

  • Call your insurance company to report property damage. The company has 15 days to confirm your claim.
  • Make temporary repairs and keep the receipts. Don't make any permanent repairs yet.
  • Take detailed photos and videos of interior and exterior damage, including potential problems such as mold, lifting roofs, and downed electrical wires.
  • The company will send a claims adjuster to assess your home. Make sure your address is visible and try to be present upon arrival to assess the damage.
  • Work with an insurance agent when repairing your home. Keep a log of everyone you talk to during the process. If you need help quickly, ask for payment up front.
  • Before settling a claim, compare offers from several providers.

Using SOS mode

Many North Texas cities had SOS mode on Tuesday morning if their mobile devices were turned on.

According to Apple's Support Center, if your iPhone or iPad's status bar says “No Service” or “Searching,” your device is not connected to a cellular network. If the status bar says “SOS” or “SOS Only,” your device can still make emergency calls.

This feature is available in the US, Canada and Australia.

People with an iPhone 13 or earlier will not receive an SOS indicator and will see a “No Service” indicator instead.

SOS mode displays your cellular service, so having a Wi-Fi connection can help you send text messages, access the Internet, and make calls.

Anna Harden

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