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Tornado Safety

Tornado Safety

Here at at Restoration 1 Mid-Cities, we’ve compiled a list of safety tips for your family in the event of a tornado.

It’s important to the know the difference in severe weather terms.

  • Severe thunderstorm watch: Conditions are conducive to the development of severe thunderstorms in and around the watch area. These storms produce hail of ¾ inch in diameter and/or wind gusts of at least 58 mph.
  • Severe thunderstorm warning: Issued when a severe thunderstorm has been observed by spotters or indicated on radar, and is occurring or imminent in the warning area. These warnings usually last for a period of 30 to 60 minutes.
  • Tornado watch: Conditions are favorable for the development of severe thunderstorms and multiple tornadoes in and around the watch area. People in the affected areas are encouraged to be vigilant in preparation for severe weather.
  • Tornado warning: Spotters have sighted a tornado or one has been indicated on radar, and is occurring or imminent in the warning area. When a tornado warning has been issued, people in the affected area are strongly encouraged to take cover immediately.

Here’s what to do if you’re caught in a tornado in these places…

If you are at home

  • Go to a windowless interior room on lowest level of your house. Go to a storm cellar or basement if your house has one. If there is no basement, go to an inner hallway or a smaller inner room without windows, such as a bathroom or closet.
  • Get away from the windows.
  • Go to the center of the room. Stay away from corners because they tend to attract debris.
  • Get under a piece of sturdy furniture such as a workbench or heavy table or desk and hold on to it.
  • Use your arms to protect head and neck.
  • If you are in a mobile home, get out and find shelter elsewhere.
  • If you are at work or school
  • Go to the basement or to an inside hallway at the lowest level.
  • Avoid places with wide-span roofs such as auditoriums, cafeterias, large hallways, or shopping malls.
  • Get under a piece of sturdy furniture such as a workbench or heavy table or desk and hold on to it.
  • Use your arms to protect head and neck.

If you are outdoors

  • If possible, get inside a building.
  • If shelter is not available or there is no time to get indoors, lie in a ditch or low-lying area or crouch near a strong building. Look out for flood waters which may also fill low areas.
  • Use your arms to protect head and neck.

If you are in a car

  • Never try to drive faster than a tornado in a car or truck. Tornadoes can change direction quickly and can lift up a car or truck and toss it through the air.
  • Get out of the car immediately and take shelter in a nearby building.
  • If there is no time to get indoors, get out of the car and lie in a ditch or low-lying area away from the vehicle. Be aware of the potential for flooding.

After the storm

  • Inform family and friends that you are safe.
  • If you are evacuated, do not return to your home until you are cleared to by officials.
  • Listen to the radio for important updates, if your mobile phone still has access to the internet, check safety on the applicable sites.
  • Check for injuries, if you’re trained in first aid, adjuster help where you can.

Source: FEMA & The American Red Cross

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