As these maps from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration show, more tornadoes are striking across the U.S. — sometimes in areas that have never before seen tornadoes — due to climate change and other factors. Even if your city or town has never experienced a tornado, you must be prepared for the day that could change. Critical Path Solutions will show you how to make a disaster preparedness plan that will outline what to do in a tornado.
Tornado Safety Skills
Tornadoes are particularly deadly weather events. The National Weather Service defines a tornado as a “violently rotating column of air extending from the base of a thunderstorm down to the ground.” Sometimes you can see the funnels forming in the clouds and touching down to earth. It is at this time that the damage is done, when the tornado sucks up and smashes buildings, cars, trees, people and anything in its path.
As you can see from this chart tracking deaths in the U.S. as a result of tornadoes, the number of fatalities has been declining, despite the fact that the number of tornadoes has been increasing. How can this be?
Disaster Preparedness Planning
It is due to proper planning and emergency preparedness. Modern scientific instruments and tools are better at predicting tornadoes, and those who live in areas such as Tornado Alley have alarms that sound to warn residents of an approaching tornado. Having a tornado safety plan in place makes the difference between life and death.
Although areas frequently hit by tornadoes have emergency preparedness plans in place, officials in areas that see tornadoes only infrequently may not think a tornado preparedness plan is necessary. But what is unnecessary when you are talking about human lives?
Critical Path Solutions has helped many municipalities create an emergency preparedness plan to protect residents from these dangerous storms and to teach tornado safety.
How to Prepare for a Tornado
When teaching tornado safety skills, we advise residents to take shelter in their basement or cellar during a tornado warning. Surprisingly, many homes in the Midwest are built without cellars. The cost of constructing a home without a cellar is cheaper, but without a cellar, your options for taking shelter from a tornado are limited.
Most people who are killed during tornadoes are killed by flying debris — they are not killed because they were sucked into the tornado. If you do not have a cellar or basement, you should try to take shelter in a room nearest the center of your home without windows, if possible.
Emergency Response Plan
We teach municipalities and residents other tornado strategy and tactical skills as well, such as how to assemble an emergency kit and what to put in it. It is important to pay attention to severe weather warnings and to train family members so they know what to do in a tornado and where to go.
Municipalities that are interested in learning how to prepare for a tornado so that they can better protect local residents’ lives should contact the disaster preparedness team at Critical Path Solutions.