The following are helpful tornado safety tips to follow at home, work, school, or while traveling.
Remember: the greatest threat from tornadoes is windblown debris!
- Prepare a tornado plan. Make sure everyone knows where to go in the event of a tornado. Conduct periodic tornado drills.
- Have a supply kit. Include a first aid kit, battery-powered radio and flashlight with extra batteries, canned or dried food and can opener, and bottled water.
- Learn where to get weather information, and the meaning of tornado watches and warnings!
The safest spot is in your basement if you have one. Get under a sturdy workbench, table, or under the staircase. Stay out of the corners, because that is where debris can collect. If you do not have a basement, then go to the lowest floor in an interior small room or hallway. Bathrooms and closets are good examples of places to go to for shelter. Get away from windows! Strong winds with a tornadic thunderstorm can shatter your windows and severely injure you.
Go to a sturdy building, like the community shelter house. If one is not available, crouch low in a dry ditch, ravine or culvert and cover your head with your hands to protect it from flying debris.
High Rise Buildings
You may not have time to go to the lowest floor, so go to a hallway or small room at the center of the building. Stay away from windows, and out of elevators!
Nursing Homes and Schools
Go to your predesignated shelter. Interior hallways or small rooms on the lowest floor are usually your best choice. Stay away from large windows or glassed areas. Do not go to dining halls, gyms or other large rooms, as roofs in these parts of a building are usually weaker.
Abandon it and go to a dry ditch or low spot. Under an overpass is also a possibility. Cover your head with your hands. NEVER try to outrun a tornado with your vehicle in urban area. Some tornadoes can travel 60 mph! Go to a sturdy building.