This week is Wisconsin's Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week. There will be a statewide tornado drill held on Thursday, April 7, at 1:45 and again at 6:45 p.m. The purpose of the drill is to test everyone’s readiness for life-threatening severe weather events such as tornado, flash floods, and damaging winds. These sirens serve as a warning for those who may be outdoors when severe weather approaches. When indoors, it is important to have an alternate source of emergency information such as a weather radio, through local radio/TV/internet or mobile phone apps which are available. Be advised that there will be no test alerts issued via the Emergency Alert System. NOAA weather radios will be activated with a message explaining it is a state-wide tornado drill.
Wisconsin Emergency Management website https://readywisconsin.wi.gov provides safety tips and educational information about tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, flash flooding, lightning and the importance of NOAA Weather Radios.
Tips to Remember:
- Tornado Watch means watch the sky. A tornado may form during a thunderstorm.
- Tornado Warning means seek shelter immediately.
- In a home or building, avoid windows and move to a basement. If a basement is not available, move to a small interior room or hallway on the lowest floor and cover yourself with towels, blankets or pillows.
- Mobile homes, even if tied down, offer little protection from tornadoes. You should leave a mobile home and go to the designated storm shelter or the lowest floor of a sturdy nearby building.
- Overpasses are not safe. Their under-the-girder-type construction can cause a dangerous wind tunnel effect.
- If you are driving, stop and take shelter in a nearby building.
- If you are driving in a rural area, drive away from the tornado to the closest building. If you cannot get away, seek shelter in a roadside ditch. Protect yourself from flying debris by covering your head with your arms, a coat or a blanket. Be prepared to move quickly in case the ditch fills with water.
- Never drive into standing water. It can take less than six inches of fast moving water to make a slow moving car float. Once floating, a vehicle can overturn and sink.