Whether you live in the middle of Tornado Alley, along the coastline or anywhere else across the nation, weather disasters can occur with little to no notice. While you may have some time to prepare for impending ice storms and hurricanes, severe thunderstorms and tornados often happen quickly, giving you a precious few minutes to shield yourself from harm's way. Knowing what to do ahead of time and preparing your family for potential weather emergencies will help you stay safe when disaster strikes.
Stay Weather Aware
While some people are often unaware of impending severe weather, it's essential to remain vigilant to keep you and your family safe. Make sure to check your local forecast regularly to see if you are at risk of experiencing severe storms. If you live in an area prone to storms, you should be familiar with the times during the year when your chances of inclement weather increase. Another good idea is to download a weather app that provides timely notifications in case of tornados, ice storms or other situations.
You can also stay informed by listening to your local news stations. Their meteorologists can inform you of current conditions and forecast predictions to help you prepare. Finally, consider purchasing a NOAA weather radio. These radios can provide you with continuously updated weather conditions, warnings, and other alerts to help keep you safe during severe weather. In addition, they come with a battery backup option, which is beneficial if the power goes out.
Prepare for Potential Evacuations
While you should stay indoors during severe weather events like lightning storms and tornados, there are other times when you may be advised to evacuate, such as in the case of hurricanes. If your local authorities announce mandatory evacuations, heed their warnings and prepare to leave immediately.
Take stock of what is in your house before you go, and take pictures and videos of everything you own. Be thorough with your recordings, and don't just focus on the big-ticket items like appliances, furniture and electronics. Take pictures of your clothing, cookware and everything else in each room. If a disaster hits your home, there is a good chance that these items will no longer be where you left them when you come back home, and inventorying everything you own after the fact will become practically impossible.