Hail damage to cars causing headaches for many - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Hail damage to cars causing headaches for many

Damage due to Friday's storms in NE Columbia (Source: Robbie Martin) Damage due to Friday's storms in NE Columbia (Source: Robbie Martin)

Keeshan Brown still has a big mess to clean up.

"I'm just going to have to buy a tarp, cover it up, and pray to God that it doesn't rain," Brown said.

Friday night, golf-ball sized hail cracked the Northeast Columbia woman's front windshield, dented the roof of her Mazda and obliterated the back windshield too.

"Last night was very terrifying," Brown said. "The storm actually came out of nowhere. You just heard things hitting the door, and we thought that maybe, at first, somebody was actually knocking on the door."

Brown has already called her insurance company and Russ Dubisky with the South Carolina Insurance News Service said many more are likely doing the same thing.

"Hail can be a very severe event when you start talking about replacing roofs for neighborhoods and things like that," Dubisky said.

Dubisky said damage isn't always noticeable at first.

"With hail damage, what we encourage folks to do, as they're inspecting, is look at things that are easy to notice," Dubisky said. "Look at your mailbox, if it's metal, and see if that's been damaged. Look at your vehicle if it was parked outside of a garage or carport to see if that has damage, which might tell you that your roof has been damaged without ever going on top of it. / Then, the next step is very easy. Just call your insurance company or your agent and tell them that you want to file a claim. They'll send somebody out to inspect the damage and get the claims process started right away."

James Cook said he got put on hold due to the volume of calls.

"I tried calling them last night, and I just got put on hold," Cook said.

In the meantime, Cook is hoping for sunny weather. He was working at a restaurant off Clemson Road when the storms passed through.

"It was pretty chaotic," Cook said. "I mean, we were in the kitchen cooking and everything and then, all of a sudden, we started hearing the hail kind of pounding on the building. We stepped out. We just opened the door, and two or three of us just got pelted with hail. I mean, we had welts on our arms from it and everything."

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