April 4-8 is Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week

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Exercises scheduled for Thursday, April 7

TINA L. SCOTT
EDITOR

April 4-8, 2022 is Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week in Wisconsin. According to a press release from ReadyWisconsin, Wisconsin averages 23 tornadoes per year, and the National Weather Service confirmed that 41 tornadoes touched down in Wisconsin in 2021.

Most residents are used to tornadoes and severe weather warnings in late spring and summer, but tornadoes can strike any month, and in December of last year, Wisconsin reported 10 touchdowns from tornado in a single day, according to the release.

In addition to tornadoes, other dangerous weather conditions can accompany severe thunderstorms, including torrential rains, hail, flooding, and damaging winds.

Planning ahead for extreme weather conditions can help residents stay safe in the event of severe weather.

• Create an emergency plan for home, work and school. Share this plan and practice it with your family. Most schools hold drills and talk about their safety plans, but families don’t always prepare ahead of time and share a plan with their family members.

• Identify designated accommodations at home, work and school; talk about where to go/what to do if family is driving; and be prepared to move to a safe location when a tornado warning is issued.

• Activate your cell phone to receive wireless emergency alerts. On many devices, it’s an option in the Settings menu, usually under Notifications, possibly at the very bottom.

• In addition to cell phone alerts, watch for outdoor warning sirens, stay tuned to local television or radio stations for alerts, and consider purchasing a NOAA weather radio. Using multiple sources helps ensure that you receive alerts in time to take action that can save lives.

• Check the weather daily to keep up to date with the forecast and possible development of severe weather in advance.

• Create an emergency kit and place it in the designated area to house a home tornado shelter. Consider the needs of your family and pets in the event of a tornado if emergency personnel cannot reach you immediately and the electricity and water are out. Plan a three-day supply of necessary items like food, water, and medicine, including snacks and formula for children and infants. A first aid kit, bottled water, non-perishable food, can opener, utensils, flashlights and batteries, battery-powered radio, medications and a list of needed medications, and ‘a list of emergency phone numbers are just a few. basic items to include. For children, don’t forget extra nappies and wipes; infant formula, water, bottles and pacifier; snacks; a few books or toys; and a stuffed animal or blanket for comfort

• Consider making a similar emergency kit to also place in vehicles.


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