tornado drills each tornado season. Designate an
area in the home as a shelter and practice having
everyone in the family go there in response to a
tornado threat. Have a plan for family members to
get back together, such as asking an out-of-state
relative or friend to serve as the family
Have disaster supplies on hand (flashlights,
battery-operated radio, extra batteries, first
aid kit, emergency food and water, nonelectric
can opener, essential medicines, cash and credit
cards, and sturdy shoes).
Know the difference between tornado
"watches" and tornado
"warnings." A tornado watch is issued
when tornadoes are possible in your area. A
tornado warning is issued when a tornado has been
sighted or indicated by weather radar.
Learn tornado danger signs: An approaching cloud
of debris can mark the location of tornado even
if a funnel is not visible. Before a tornado
hits, the wind may die down and the air may
become very still. Tornadoes generally occur near
the trailing edge of a thunderstorm. It is not
uncommon to see clear, sunlit skies behind a
|If at home,
go at once to the lowest level of the building,
or to an inner hallway or a smaller inner room
without windows, such as a bathroom or closet.
Stay away from the windows and go to the center
of the room, avoiding 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 arms to protect head
If in a mobile home, get out and find shelter
If at work or school, go to the lowest level, but
avoid places with wide-span roofs.
If outdoors, 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. Be aware of the potential for
If in a car, never try to out-drive a tornado.
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.
injured or trapped persons, giving first aid when
appropriate. Remember to help your neighbors who
may require special assistanceinfants, the
elderly, and people with disabilities.
Stay out of damaged buildings, returning home
only when authorities say it is safe. Clean up
spilled medicines, bleaches, gasoline or other
flammable liquids immediately. Leave the
buildings if you smell gas or chemical fumes.
Inspect utilities in a damaged home, checking for
gas leaks, electrical system damage, and sewage
and water lines damage.
Take pictures of the damageboth to the
house and its contentsfor insurance
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have these emailed to you promptly.
Emergency Management Agency