Two tornadoes have passed dangerously close to my home over the course of the last two weeks. Each time I found myself hunkered down in the closet.The first tornado went less than a half mile east of my home; todays' early morning storm was a half mile west! My neighbors and I feel like we have a target on our back.
Fortunately, there was only minor damage with each tornado. Downed tree limbs, trees toppled, their roots upended. Shingles were ripped from rooftops, but to my knowledge, no injuries or car accidents as a direct result. Nearly 1000 households were without power at 10:00 a.m.
**I'm now receiving reports of multiple trees down in nearby neighborhoods, roof damage, fences down, etc.
Tornadoes are most common from March to June, but can occur at any time. It's wise to take precautions, because tornadoes give little warning.
Following are a few practical tips to guide you through severe weather:
- Listen to the local radio or television weather station
- Keep your cell phone charged
- Consider an emergency weather radio for alerts and information
- Decide which room in your house is the safest BEFORE there is an emergency. Choose an interior room away from windows and potential flying debris
- Have an emergency kit with medical supplies, a flashlight, batteries, bottled water, granola bars
- Keep blankets and pillows nearby or in your "safe room"
- Take shelter and stay alert to weather sirens and possible "freight train" sounds
- Avoid being in your vehicle if possible during tornado watches. A "watch" means weather conditions are favorable for a tornado. Never leave home during an actual "warning".
Despite an old wives' tale, it is unnecessary and to open doors or windows in your home in an attempt to equalize the pressure in your home. Doing so will only allow blowing rain and wind to damage your homes' interior.
Pay attention to local weather reports and heed the warning of the Emergency Alert System.