This week is Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week, and these tips – and myth busters – could help save lives.
Here are some tips to be prepared for the potential of severe weather:
> Make a severe weather plan before you need it. Your family may not be together when a disaster strikes, so it is important to plan in advance how you will get to a safe place, how you will contact one another, how you will get back together, and what you will do in different situations.
Preparedness steps you can take include:
> Get a Kit. When preparing for a possible emergency situation, it is best to think first about the basics of survival: fresh water, food, clean air, and warmth.
> Make a Plan. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so plan in advance.
> Be Informed. Learn more about the potential emergencies that could happen where you live and the appropriate way to respond to them.
> This is a great time to talk to your families and make sure everyone knows where to go when a Tornado Warning is issued. Don't waste time – go to your safe place quickly and turn your NOAA Weather Radio on for up-to-date information when a severe storm occurs.
Some tornado myths include:
> Seeking shelter under an overpass is safe: An overpass can act as a wind tunnel, and flying debris is a huge concern.
> Opening windows to equalize pressure: Most damage from a tornado is from strong winds and debris hitting a home, not low atmospheric pressure. Your time is better spent seeking shelter.
> All tornadoes are visible as they approach: A tornado is a violently rotating column of air. Often you will see dirt and debris being kicked up at the base of the tornado before you will see the visible tornado shape. A good indicator of a tornado is a loud roar, similar to a train.
> You can outrun a tornado in a vehicle: Tornadoes can move at up to 70 mph or more and shift directions erratically and without warning. It is unwise to try to outrace a tornado. It is better to abandon your vehicle and seek shelter immediately.
The 2019 Tornado Drills will consist of a mock tornado watch and mock tornado warnings issued for all of Wisconsin. This is a great opportunity for your school, business and community to practice your emergency plans.
1 p.m. – National Weather Service issues a mock tornado watch for all of Wisconsin (a watch means tornadoes are possible in your area. Remain alert for approaching storms).
1:45 p.m. - National Weather Service issues mock tornado warning for all of Wisconsin (A warning means a tornado has been sighted or indicated on weather radar. Move to a safe place immediately).
2 p.m. – End of 1:45 p.m. mock tornado warning drill
6:45 p.m. – National Weather Service issues a mock tornado warning for all of Wisconsin.
7 p.m. – End of 6:45 p.m. mock tornado warning drill
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