Severe storms aren’t something new for Tennessee. I have lived in tornado alley most of my life and even though Tennessee isn’t considered in it we get our fair share of tornadoes and severe weather. I have learned a few things along the way and here are some tips for how to prepare you and your family when faced with these storms.
- Create a plan. If you don’t have a plan already it’s time to make a plan. Weather is so unpredictable and if you aren’t prepared for anything severe you can find yourself in possibly a dangerous situation. When I was in the Cub Scouts I was ingrained with their motto “Be prepared.” Make sure your family knows the plan.
- Find a safe place. Find a safe place in your home to go to when it gets bad outside. If you don’t have a storm shelter, it’s best to find an interior room that doesn’t have any windows or glass. If you don’t have an interior room your best bet might be the bathroom tub. Get down in it and if you have time, or are able to, throw a mattress on top to help prevent flying debris from hitting you.
- Stay low. Make sure to stay low to the ground. If you are in the path of a tornado or storm with high winds make sure you make yourself small and cover your head.
- Supplies and important items. I would also recommend keeping some items nearby you at night if you are caught in a storm. I keep important items like keys, wallet, and flashlight nearby me at night just in case of such emergencies. I would also recommend keeping shoes close by. If you have ever been in a tornado you know that sometimes in the aftermath it is hard to find your belongings. Also, there is glass and debris everywhere so it is important to have something to protect your feet if you are having to walk through any of that. In general, it would be a good idea to prepare an emergency kit to have handy in the event of damage or power loss. Some items that would be good to include is: a first aid kit, batteries, important documents, whistle, trash bags, blanket, etc.
- Invest in a weather radio. If your power goes out you will want a way of knowing if the storm has passed and if it is safe to come out. There are also several apps you can download on your phone that can be helpful.