I’ve posted this video before but for the sake of the topic and how it perfectly illustrates the point, worth posting again.
The 4 things you should ABSOLUTELY NOT do during a tornado. Any one of these actions will probably get you killed,let alone all 4.
- he let his spouse fend for herself while he’s off taking video.BTW,she was killed during the event.
- standing in front of the window. Worse the tornado is heading directly towards them.
- they did not go to a safe space. It appears they are on a higher floor,probably a 2 story house or apartment.
- they had no plan in place.NONE. He made no attempt to take any actions other than taking the video.
Now, for what you should do-the exact opposite of what this man did-that will at least maximize your chances for survival.
Tornadoes are awesome. It’s easy to get mesmerized though the most distance between us and them is a really good idea. If a tornado looks like it’s not moving it’s probably heading DIRECTLY at you. If that’s the case you’re probably too close anyway. No picture or video is worth your life or the life of your family or spouse.
Stay away from windows. They are going to break. You can be killed by debris which is how most people are killed by tornadoes.
Go to your lowest level, the best place being a basement or a shelter if you have one. If you have neither be on the lowest spot YOU have in a closet or bathroom with as many walls between you and the tornadic activity as possible. Protect your head-a helmet is perfect if you have one. Stay put until you either get an all clear or you’re sure the event is over. There is likely going to be downed power lines. They’re live. Avoid them.
Have a plan and be sure you’re whole family has it down pat. “Don’t be scared, be prepared”. Panic isn’t helpful, planning is.
Allow time. Stay weather aware. Check the storm prediction center on a regular basis. If you’re structure isn’t safe give yourself time to go to a shelter that is-or make some kind of arrangements so if the time comes you have a place to go.
Look under Convective Outlooks: https://www.spc.noaa.gov/products/
Again, allow time and the best way to do that is to be weather aware. i’m never that shocked by a day that starts out gorgeous, sunny and with the prettiest blue skies; people are caught off guard and cannot believe what happened. A tornado can take place anywhere given the right conditions.
A WATCH means look out, keep an eye peeled, stay tuned. A WARNING means you better be in your designated safe area and the plan is in place.
The sirens are probably going off-if your area has any-and the tornado IS on the ground or been spotted. WARNING means it’s there. A watch is when you have some time to get to your shelter or safe space. A warning means time’s up.
Two places NOT to be; a motor vehicle/mobile home.
Do not go into an underpass. It increases wind speed. It only looks safe. It’s a terrible spot.People have done it and survived but that was ONLY by chance.
Have a weather alert system. A weather radio is excellent and they’re fairly cheap. Midland makes some good models. If you have no radio make sure you can get phone alerts especially at night.
A storm chaser i know of recommends this one: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B071HFV836/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=rkhtv-20&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=B071HFV836&linkId=c79588f8caa6dd4e2b6b0e292c36d6c6
If it’s out of your price range just do a search. There are cheaper models.We have a weather radio. When the alert goes off,with the volume up,you can definitely hear it. Comes in handy. The reports are for the whole area from the National Weather Service.
Night time tornadoes are especially dangerous. For 2 obvious reasons; 1. you don’t usually see them 2. you could possibly be asleep so be sure you can get alerts.
The debris after the event isn’t visible either and by then you’ve likely lost power. Which brings me to my next point. Have your flashlights ready and be sure they are working. It’s like dead batteries in a smoke alarm. If the batteries are dead, they’re not going to work when you need them. Make sure your cell phone is charged. It may come in handy too. RAIN WRAPPED TORNADOES are especially dangerous. You can’t tell they are there. Spotters don’t like em either.
Your neighborhood may want to consider a buddy look out plan. It’d be great to have arrangements to contact by phone as a secondary alert system or in some cases it could be a first. Neighbors should be willing to look out for each other. Maybe 1 or 2 neighbors have a basement they’d be willing to have some company in for awhile. We always make the offer to people. We have a basement. All are welcome to come and no need to ask.
Keep in mind if conditions are favorable for one tornado they can still be favorable for more. Stay alert, stay prepared and don’t take for granted an event is over. Wait until the weather channel or your local weather reporters give you an all clear. I’ve seen instances where 1 tornado was quickly followed by a 2nd.
Prayers for the people of Ohio that just went through tornadoes. I believe Indiana also got hit. Prayers for all. It’s a terrible experience. Helpful to BE WEATHER AWARE & PREPARED. I’m going to keep saying it from time to time.