Our hearts go out to people dealing with the carnage from tornadoes and other severe weather over the past few days. The recent wild weather, normally part of the spring, should also serve as a reminder to everyone in the Mid-Ohio Valley: Be prepared.
Nature seldom gives us the luxury of time. So, use the recent severe weather elsewhere as a lesson to folks in the Mid-Ohio Valley in case a major storm hits here.
The insurance industry has some useful tips any family can follow.
- Stay calm during the storm. Losing your cool causes your decision making to falter
- Take shelter in either a basement, a small closet, under a staircase, or in a bathroom.
- Keep handy both a flashlight and either a battery powered radio or TV to keep track of the situation, but be sure not to forget about keeping fresh, back-up batteries handy. In addition, a basic first aid kit is a necessity in any household, so be sure you have one that is well stocked in case of an emergency.
- If you are in an office building, a hospital or a school, go toward the center of the building, away from any and all windows.
- If you're in a car when a tornado hits, get out and find a safe, secure place to hide. If there are no buildings nearby, then find a ditch or lay flat on the ground, face down, and cover the back of your head with your hands.
Ohio observes Spring Severe Weather Awareness Week March 25-31. As part of that week this year's statewide tornado drill is planned for 9:50 a.m. March 28.
In a normal year, that would seem to be early enough to get prepared for wild spring weather. Peak tornado season in Ohio is generally April through July, and they usually occur between 2 and 10 p.m.
This year, we're not so sure if anything is going according to the norm, given the recent storms in the Midwest and South. A little early preparation and awareness couldn't hurt.