In an age where calamity can strike just about anywhere, it pays to be forearmed. This can spell the difference between survival and death. Unfortunately, not all disastrous events can be predicted so we need to take advantage of the occasions when we are given an advantage. Tornadoes are among those that can be tracked and monitored by experts. This allows authorities to issue warnings to communities and areas that would be affected by the severe storm.
You may have read basic information about tornadoes but being prepared for one involves a whole different process. A safety plan takes time to put together so if you don’t have one yet, you better start now. Here are some tips to guide you and allow you to evaluate your readiness for extreme weather conditions.
· Draft a plan that specifies a place where you and the members of your family should go in the event of a tornado. Ask for the emergency plans of your kids’ school and your office so that you can discuss alternative shelters or locations with your family. This will make it easier for you to find each other in the event of a calamity.
· Build a bug out bag and keep in in your car. Bug out bags have the essential supplies a person would need to survive the first 72 hours after a disaster. These would include light, fire, shelter, security, food and important documents.
· Areas that are frequented by tornadoes usually maintain a warning system which involves the use of sirens to alert communities when a strong storm has tracked. This gives the locals enough time to lock up their homes and relocate to safe areas. If you live in such a place or frequently visit one, make sure that you understand how the warning scheme works.
· Familiarize yourself with tornado warning systems and keep an eye out for sudden changes in weather conditions. It is still possible for sophisticated devices to malfunction or break down so it pays to have a back-up plan. A keen sense of observation will serve you well and buy you enough time to implement your emergency plan.
· Assign a place in your house where you can gather the members of your family to wait out the storm. A good place would be a room on the lowest floor without windows like the basement or a cellar.
· Prepare emergency supplies like water, food items, first aid kits and fire extinguishers and orient your entire family of their location. Place flashlights with spare batteries in different areas of your home so you can get them easily in case the power gets cut.
· Even experts can’t predict just how serious the devastation can be so it pays to be prepared for the worst. Be prepared to move if you have to. Your supplies should be contained in a bag that you can easily carry if you have to leave your house. This includes basic supplies like water, dried or canned food, biscuits, toiletry items, and prescription medications.
· Make sure that you have a portable radio with spare batteries so you can listen to weather updates and news advisories. This will help you know the bigger picture so you can plan your next move.
· Have your family learn useful skills like getting proper training for first aid and knowing when and how to turn off the switches of basic utilities like water, gas and electricity.
· Allow enough time to pass before moving out of your shelter room or area. Listen to sounds around you and note if the winds have died down or the rain has stopped. If the wind is still strong, it’s best to remain indoors because you can get hit by flying debris.
You may think that this type of preparation only applies to specific areas but think again. Extreme weather disturbances have happened in unlikely places the world over in the past decade. This means that it can happen where you live. In the end, you would be better off being prepared than to go through a calamity wondering if you’ll survive.