|Preparing for a storm|
As most of you know, a little over a week ago the town of Moore, Oklahoma (and other neighboring towns) suffered a devastating blow when an EF-4 tornado ripped across the plains. Many people lost their homes and everything in them and some even lost loved ones. This has had me thinking about how many people, regardless of where they live, are unprepared for severe whether that threatens to take away everything they hold dear.
As a native Oklahoma girl, tornados are just something we deal with every spring/summer. The majority of us have a plan for when severe weather rises, but many people don’t. This is especially true for people who live in states that don’t see much tornado activity. However, over the past few years, tornado has appeared to be shifting as more tornados have occurred in other states across the Midwest. States like Missouri, Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Nebraska and several others have seen an increase in tornados.
Since a lot of our customers from Kids Formal reside in states other than our “home” state(s), I thought it would be beneficial to go over a few basic storm precautions to help ensure you and your little ones are prepared in case a life-threatening storm ever comes your way.
1. Have a plan. This is something that you can do right now. Formulate a plan for where you and the kids are going to go if a super cell storm is approaching. If you have a storm shelter, basement or an above ground safe room, this is where you and your family should go. However, if you don’t, go to an interior room that’s centrally located and doesn’t contain any windows…bathrooms are generally the best choice. Get in the bathtub and cover yourself and the kids up with a blankets, pillows and/or a mattress to protect yourself from flying debris. Generally, it is not recommended that you try to outrun a tornado, but in the case in Oklahoma last week, the weathermen were actually advising people without underground shelters to run because “you will not survive if you are above ground.” So, if you have enough warning and have a friend or relative with a storm shelter, it may be a good idea to leave your house.
2. Stock the essentials. Nobody ever wants to think about losing their house and everything in it, but it’s always a risk when a severe storm/tornado is on the way. This is one reason, my family always kept a few essentials stocked in the storm shelter. Things liked bottled water, canned food, flashlights/batteries, lanterns/oil and even a plastic urinal are all good ideas. If you have a baby, consider keeping an “emergency” bag ready to go that contains extra diapers, baby food, wipes, pacifiers and anything else that you may need if you get stuck down there for several hours.
3. Buy a weather radio. One of the most beneficial things you can have on hand during storm season is a weather radio. These things are great because they don’t rely on electricity and can often pick up signal in basements and storm shelters. When you know severe weather is possible, make sure you are constantly checking the weather. You don’t want to get caught off guard by a tornado that quickly forms.
4. Tell family and friends where you will be. Always make sure someone outside of your household knows where you will be in the event of severe weather. That way if anything does happen and they can’t reach you, they will know where to look for you!