We can look out for our elderly friends, family and neighbors too and make sure they are aware and prepared. They have some disadvantages that make them more vulnerable to weather events like tornadoes.
We can have a day that starts off bright and sunny, not a dark cloud in the sky and be caught totally off guard. If you believe YOU would be caught off guard
This means we have to get weather aware.
- Check the storm prediction center every day and see if your area is a risk area. https://www.spc.noaa.gov/products/outlook/
- if you want to go one step further you can check in with these guys. They do forecasts. They’re not a substitute for your local forecast but you can add em. Reed Timmer is a well known storm chaser and has a phd in meteorology if you like a lot of detail. An added bonus with Reed :if you want to watch storm chaser video he’s your guy.One of these choices is bound to be your cup of tea. https://youtu.be/hhESr3ItFqU Ryan Hall, Reed Timmer, Nathan “N8” Snyder https://youtu.be/ohAP5PbYdu8 or all 3. https://youtu.be/lxdFh8nYMgM I consider them 3 of the best. They’re all a tad different.
- Tune into a NOAA weather radio. You can do all 3 of these things and have a good heads up before severe weather hits. You won’t be at a Dunkin Donuts doing this:
Now that we know that Tornado could be coming our way we have our plan ready to go! There is only one place on the planet that cannot get a tornado. The Antarctic. My guess is that you don’t live there either. A tornado can occur-except there-any time,anywhere with the right conditions. Which is why the Antarctic will never get one. Other than that we can’t say never. Moutains,hills,buildings and water etc don’t stop em. So with that said let’s have our plan and safe spot ready to go on a moments notice.
- do not be in a mobile home or vehicle. If you live in a mobile home have a shelter you can go to if the day should come. You can always check with a friend or family member who would be willing to put you up or any building that would provide more shelter than a mobile home. If you need to do any shopping get it out of the way. Do not be in a vehicle during a tornado. That’s not the time to be driving around. You want to be in your safe spot.
- Go to the lowest level of your house-basement is usually it- a bathroom or closet and put as many sturdy walls between you and the tornadic activity as possible. STAY AWAY FROM WNDOWS. Pets? get them into the safe spot during the watch and you won’t have to be running around the house during the warning. Once the warning goes out there is precious little time. That’s when you better be in the safe spot. It couldn’t hurt to hang out in the basement/spot during the watch either.
- Make sure your cell phone is fully charged, you have a flashlight handy with fresh batteries. Got helmets? Use them. Mattresses,pillows-the goal is keep covered. Most injuries during a tornado are from debris. The flashlight goes without saying. You’re probably not going to have electric when it’s all said and done. You’ll be looking at a power outage with possible live wires and debris on the ground. Have your shoes on?
- have a way to get alerts! Especially critical during the night hours when you could be sleeping. A NOAA weather radio with emergency alert/alarm is a great way to keep informed, get alerts.They’re relatively inexpensive. i am not pushing any particular brand though i do recommend Midland because we use one. As long as you have one and use it, that’s all that matters. Night time (nocturnal) tornadoes are especially dangerous. You can’t see em. IF they’re rain wrapped you can’t see em either. Add both and you really have tornadoes in the dark. It’s bad enough in the day light.
- Everyone in your family will know the drill when the time comes because you already have the plan, know it well by going over it and you’ve picked out your safe spot.
- Come out when the authorities clear it. As we say, Don’t Be Scared, Be Prepared. As long as you are prepared you’re less apt to panic. There may only be minutes and we don’t want to have major panic take over. Sure you’ll be scared. Who wouldn’t be? Awareness and PREPARATION keep panic in check. We don’t want to go the other way either. Where we don’t give mother nature credit where credit is due. She’s powerful and sometimes sneaky. Don’t postpone the plan either thinking someday you’ll get around to it. We don’t want the someday to be the day you need one.
i feel badly for people i see in news reports who either didn’t know what was coming or weren’t ready for it- or both- and are completely caught unaware with no real plan. i feel especially badly for seniors. They often really do need someone to look out for them. If the best you can do is pick up the phone and make them aware, that’s the best you CAN do, please do! If you have a sturdier building or basement and know an event is possible in your area that might be a good day to invite them over.. Just do something to make sure they’re taken care of for the day. Older people sometimes have mobility issues or less access to information and alerts. Anyway, stay safe folks. The technology we have today is leap years ahead of what we had years ago. It’s not totally 100% but its come a long ways.