Severe weather safety plan


by Ben Pine

Posted on May 25, 2011 at 6:17 AM

Updated Wednesday, May 25 at 6:57 AM

Severe weather is expected in central indiana today. Take this opportunity to practice your safety plan at work and in the home.

***A severe thunderstorm or tornado watch means that conditions are favorable for the development of severe thunderstorms or tornadoes. Be aware of your environment...and stay tuned to noaa weather radio...or your favorite local media outlet for possible Watches...Warnings or Statements.

***A severe thunderstorm or tornado warning...usually issued for portions of one or more counties at a time...means that severe weather or a tornado is imminent or occurring. Those in the path of the storm must seek shelter immediately in a sturdy structure...away from windows...and below ground if possible.

It is important to remember that severe thunderstorms can and occasionally do produce tornadoes with little or no advance warning. If you hear or see a tornado...or if you feel threatened...move immediately to shelter. Seconds can save your Life. Know what to do when a tornado threatens.

Follow these simple Safety rules. In a home or small building...Go to the basement or to an interior room...such as a closet or bathroom...on the lowest floor possible. Get under a sturdy table or bed...or crouch low and cover your head With your hands.

In mobile homes or vehicles...abandon them and go to a sturdy structure. If there is no such shelter nearby...lie flat in a Ditch...Ravine...Culvert...or other low spot...and shield your head with your hands. Never take shelter under a highway overpass. Overpasses create a deadly wind tunnel effect...which will pull you out from under the bridge.

In large buildings such as schools...Factories...Hospitals... Nursing homes...and shopping centers...go to the predesignated shelter area. Interior hallways on the lowest floor offer the most protection. Avoid areas with large span these roofs are weak and prone to failure.

In high rise buildings...go to a small interior room or hallway... away from windows. Stay away from not open or close them. It will not increase or decrease the amount of structural damage...and you will waste valuable time and put your life at risk from flying debris. Remember...flying debris is the most dangerous hazard from tornadoes.

Severe thunderstorms can also cause considerable damage from hail or wind...and can be deadly. If a severe thunderstorm warning is issued...move to a place of safety...just as you would during a Tornado Warning. Have a weather television nearby to stay alert of any changes to the weather situation. With severe weather expected to impact the region later this afternoon and tonight.

Now is a good time to double check that your noaa weather radio is working. Also if your weather radio comes equipped with a battery backup...Check that the batteries are working.