Tornado Safety Tips
Tornados are one of nature’s most powerful and destructive forces. The violence of a tornado is heart stopping. The death and destruction they can leave behind is heart breaking.
Even though there is no guaranteed way to stay safe during a tornado, listed below are some tips on how to prepare for a tornado and what to do if you find yourself caught in the path of one.
* Prepare for tornados by gathering emergency supplies including a 3 day supply of water and non-perishable food, medications, flashlights, extra batteries, important documents (such as insurance policies and identification), first aid kit, local maps and a full tank of gasoline.
* Have a tornado plan in place. Plan ahead of time where you will go to take shelter. Make sure all family members are aware of the plan. Have a pre-determined place to meet after the storm has passed to account for the safety of all family members.
* Anyone in the path of a tornado should immediately take shelter indoors in a basement or interior first-floor room such as a bathroom, closet or interior hallway. Crouch as low as possible to the floor, facing down and cover your head with your hands. A bathtub may offer a shell of partial protection. Avoid areas with windows. For extra protection you can get underneath large, solid pieces of furniture such as a heavy table or work bench, or cover yourself with a mattress or sleeping bag.
* Avoid automobiles and mobile homes. These provide absolutely no protection from tornados. Most tornadoes can destroy even tied-down mobile homes. If caught in an automobile or mobile home during a tornado, you should seek shelter in a sturdy building or outside.
* If caught outside, you should lie flat in a depressed area such as a drainage ditch and wait for the storm to pass. Protect the back of your head with your arms. Get as far away from trees and cars as you can; they may be blown onto you. Do not seek shelter under bridges, they offer no protection at all against flying debris.
After the tornado has passed, keep your family together and wait for emergency personnel to arrive. Render first aid to those who are injured. Stay away from power lines and puddles with electrical wires in them. Do not use matches or lighters, in case of leaking natural gas lines or fuel tanks nearby. As hard as it may be, remain calm and alert.