If a tornado warning is issued for your area, the likelihood of a tornado
is very real. Advances in technology have let meteorologists at the National
Weather Service forecast when disasters may strike with more and more
precision. But knowing that a disaster is coming is not enough. Having
a plan actually makes you feel safer knowing what to do in an emergency
means that you are prepared for a disaster and will be able to help yourself
and others to be safe.
If you're home
- If you have a basement, go there and seek shelter under sturdy furniture.
- If you don't have a basement, take cover in the center part of your
house on the lowest floor. The best options are a small room, or else
under sturdy furniture.
- Don't open the windows; it takes too much time and allows strong winds
to enter your building.
- Try to stay away from windows and just take cover.
If you're in school, a shopping center, or another public place
- Move to the pre-designated shelter areas.
- If you don't know where that is, move to a center hallway on the lowest
- If you think that the building you're in is old or unsafe, move quickly
to a nearby newer building, or else take cover outside on low, protected
- Be sure to stay out of auditoriums, gymnasiums, and other structures
with wide free-span roofs these offer little protection since
wide roofs can fall in during tornadoes.
If you're in open country
- Move away from the tornado's path at right angles.
- If there isn't time to get out of the way, lie down flat in the nearest
ditch or ravine.
If you're in a car
- Don't try to outrun a tornado.
- If possible, take shelter in a sturdy structure.
- Otherwise, get out of the car and move to the nearest ditch or depression
until the tornado passes.