If you grew up in Texas, you are probably all too familiar with the blaring sound of tornado sirens. Springtime weather changes present a very real threat for residents of Tornado Alley. Although extremely violent EF5 tornadoes are rare, it is imperative that every tornado watch and tornado warning is taken seriously. Before a tornado is headed your way, read these tips to make sure you know exactly what to do when that siren sounds to keep you and your loved ones safe.
- Brief your family with a tornado emergency plan for where to go for safe shelter
- Stay connected to emergency weather updates by with your smart phone or a battery-operated radio, with fresh batteries or external battery packs to recharge your device without leaving shelter
- Put together an emergency kit with water, non-perishable foods, first aid and medication
- Keep a list of important phone numbers, addresses, and other contact information
- Store important documents (birth certificates, social security cards, etc.) in a fireproof and waterproof safe or secured container
Know the Warning Signs
- Dark, sometimes green-tinted sky
- Large, dark, low-lying cloud approaching
- Large hail storm
- The calm before the storm- winds dying down or still air
- Right before a tornado strikes, sounds of a loud roar or freight train
Seek Safe Shelter
- If your home doesn’t have a basement, go to an interior room with no windows on the lowest floor
- Bathroom plumbing connected to underground pipes provides additional hold
- If you live in a high rise building, go to the center hallway. You may not have enough time to go to the first floor
- Do NOT stay in a mobile home
- Inside your safe room, getting under something sturdy like a heavy table or bench will provide extra protection.
- Cover yourself with a sleeping bag or blanket, and protect your head and neck with anything available
- Put on shoes so you can safely walk through tornado debris after the storm passes
Driving Tornado Safety Tips
- If you see a tornado while driving, get out of your car and seek shelter in a ditch
- Stay as far away from your car and other heavy objects as possible
- Contrary to popular belief, do NOT seek shelter under an overpass. Winds often pick up speed in these areas and can sweep you away
- Protect your head with a jacket or blanket if available
Know the Difference Between Tornado Watch and Tornado Warning
- Tornado Watch: Weather conditions are possible for a tornado to form. Tornado Watch usually covers a large area and lasts for several hours.
- Tornado Warning: A funnel cloud has been spotted and the storm is moving. Take shelter immediately! Tornado Warnings cover a smaller distance and can last as little as several minutes, or until the tornado passes or dissipates
After more than 25 years representing injury victims in car wrecks, truck wrecks, and motorcycle accidents, the experienced team of professional accident attorneys at Reyes Browne Reilley have seen the consequences of negligence first-hand. If you have sustained injuries because of a car wreck which was not your fault, contact us now for a free and confidential case review. Fill out our form online, or call (214) 526-7900, and we will get you on the road to recovery.