Tornadoes

Tornado Ready?

In the event of a Tornado:

  • Know your sources of information
  • Prepare your home and workplace
  • Develop an emergency communications plan
  • Know what to do when a hurricane approaches

Download How to Prepare for a Tornado, a hazard-specific guide, which provides information on the basics of each hazard, how to protect yourself and your property, and what steps to take now.

A tornado is a violently rotating column of air that extends from a thunderstorm to the ground and is often—although not always—visible as a funnel cloud. Once the tornado has passed, the National Weather Service (NWS) rates them using the Enhanced Fujita (EF) scale based on the severity of the damage and estimated wind speed. The scale goes from an EF0 tornado, which causes light damage, to an EF5 tornado, which causes total devastation. Lightning and hail are common in thunderstorms that produce tornadoes. The destruction and injury caused by a tornado depends on the intensity, size, path, time of day, and amount of time they are on the ground. Wind from tornadoes can reach more than 200 miles per hour, and damage paths can be more than 1 mile wide and 50 miles long. Tornadoes can cause fatalities and devastate a community in seconds. That is why it is important to establish a protective location; secure financial, insurance, and medical documents; and assemble contact information to prepare for tornadoes.FEMA_PrepareAthon Poster_Tornado Artwork-500

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Think about preparedness; at home, at work, at school, even in your car.
What should you do? Check your Emergency Plan and Evacuation Routes everywhere you normally spend time. Make sure you have an out of State contact for you, your friends and your family (long distance phone service is usually restored before local - and mobile services and internet will likely not work in a major disaster.)
Of course, you should Check your Emergency Supplies, too:
  • Count your stock... is it enough?
  • Check your expiration dates (food, water, batteries)
  • Keep cash on hand
  • Don't let your gas tank get below half-full
  • Think-Plan-Prepare-Survive!

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