Severe Weather Awareness: Family Preparedness
This week marks Severe Weather Awareness Week in central Georgia. Many people in the area ask why we observe severe weather awareness week in February. It's a simple answer - not only is severe weather possible year round, but the prime opportunity for severe weather occurs in the Spring and Summer months, which are just a few weeks away. Now is the time to prepare.
Severe Weather Awareness Week provides a great chance to learn about severe weather, actions to take when severe weather strikes and review your families preparedness plan.
Here is the week's schedule:
Monday - Family Preparedness
Tuesday - Thunderstorm Safety
Wednesday - Tornado Safety (Tornado Drill)
Thursday - Lightning Safety
Friday - Flooding
The week's highlight will be a region-wide tornado drill on Wednesday, February 6th at 9 a.m. A special test message will be issued by the National Weather Service and can be used to test your preparedness and your alert device.
As noted above, Monday's topic is Family Preparedness.
All families should have a family disaster plan to ensure that you and your family are prepared for an emergency. This also includes inquiring about emergency plans at work and school.
Here are tips from the National Weather Service on 'Making a Plan':
Learn what hazards affect your area. Contact the National Weather Service office in Peachtree City, your local emergency management office, or a local Red Cross chapter to learn which hazards can affect you.
Make sure you know what to do when severe weather strikes.
If you get separated from family, make sure you have a place to meet or have a out-of-town contact to let know you are ok.
You can fill out your Family Emergency Plan through Ready.gov.
Involve children in the plan making process. See how Sesame Street can help kids be ready for a disaster!
Practice your plan.
You should also be informed and have a way to get severe weather messages. One of the best methods to be notified is to have a NOAA Weather Radio:
Make sure that you get watches, warnings and advisories when severe weather strikes. These are just a few ways in which to get watches, warnings and advisories - remember it's important to receive alerts and warnings multiple ways.
Have a NOAA Weather Radio. Make sure it's plugged in, turned on, and have extra batteries just in case the power goes out. A key benefit of NOAA Weather Radio is it will alert you while you are sleeping so you can take shelter.
There are many ways to get alerts via cell phone now.
Check with your local emergency manager to see if there are sirens in your area. Learn the policy specific to your area and remember that sirens are an outdoor warning system and are not designed to be heard indoors.
WGXA will also broadcast watches, warnings and advisories.
For more information Family Preparedness, consider visiting this link from the National Weather Service: http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ffc/?n=family_plan
WGXA will cover Thunderstorm Safety on Tuesday.