Weather Events

What should you do to prepare for a tornado?
Answered by Discovery Channel
  • Discovery Channel

    Discovery Channel

  1. Know the difference between a tornado watch and a tornado warning. If you hear announcements that there is a tornado watch for your area, it simply means that current weather conditions could create tornado activity. You don't need to alter your behavior under a tornado watch, but you might want to stay tuned in case that watch becomes a warning. A tornado warning means that a tornado has been witnessed in your area; if this happens, you need to get to safety.

    If you live in an area where tornadoes are likely, you can take a number of steps before a tornado ever hits to increase your chances of coming through it:

    1. Know your community's warning system. Is there a siren, or should you listen to a local radio station?

    2. Identify where your family will go in case of a tornado warning. Do you have a basement? Will you have to get to a community shelter?

    3. Make a list of any possessions on which you might need to file an insurance claim, and keep that list someplace safe, like a safety deposit box.

    4. Prepare an emergency kit (see below).

    5. Practice with your family exactly what you'll do if a tornado comes.

    You should create an emergency kit for your family well before you expect an emergency to arrive. Include enough food and water to last for at least three days. You can estimate each person will need around 2 quarts (about 1.9 liters) of water per day. Include a first-aid kit and some simple tools, such as a can opener, utility knife and wrench. You'll also want flashlights and a radio with working batteries. Also, make sure you have blankets and clothing changes for everyone in your family - - include rain gear as well. It usually helps to have some cash and identification on hand.

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