Weatherford Democrat

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March 14, 2014

Tornado awareness

With spring’s arrival, severe weather could soon be arriving, too.

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• Dark or greenish looking sky.

• Large hail.

• Large, dark, low-lying clouds (particularly if rotating).

• A loud roar.

Where to go

If a tornado warning goes into effect in your area implement your plan and take cover immediately.

• Assign a designated area for you and your family. If you do not have a shelter or basement then retreat to the center of an interior room. If possible place a mattress or thick blankets over yourself to protect against flying debris.

• Avoid rooms with windows.

• Retreat to bathrooms or closets. Many newer homes have been designed with large windows in the bathroom; you’ll definitely want to avoid those. The point is to put as many walls as possible between you and the exterior of the house.

• If you are in a multiple story building retreat to the lowest floor.

• Protect your head and neck with your arms and hands.

• In the event your home or workplace is damaged, be prepared to safely turn off the gas and electric if possible.

If on the road

If you are in a mobile home or in your car:

• Mobile homes are not safe in the event of a tornado. Make arrangements to seek shelter in a sturdy building once a tornado warning has sounded or weather conditions become so that tornadoes in the area may be possible.

• Make pre-designated plans to retreat to a safe area at the onset of a tornado warning.

• If you commute, pay attention to buildings and exits along your route in the event you find yourself on the highway when a tornado strikes. Look for sturdy buildings that you may seek shelter in. Do not abandon your vehicle in the middle of the highway; always pull to the right side of the road.

• Vehicles are one of the worst places to be in a tornado. If you are in your vehicle and can safely do so, drive away from the storm but remember, when drivers on the road see a tornado in their path, they too will attempt to get away from it and create many hazards. Do not try to outrun a tornado if directly in the path; if possible immediately seek shelter.

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