Friday, May 23, 2008

Bad Weather

We had some awful weather this week - hail and tornado warnings. Just last week on Mother's Day there were tornadoes very near here. Moving around so often as a kid gave me a healthy exposure to different kinds of "weather" - tornadoes and thunderstorms in Oklahoma and earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunamis in Hawaii. Not that I was ever in a tsunami, but in Hawaii they teach schoolchildren what to do in case of one. Come to think of it, I wasn't actually in a volcano, either. But on was erupting while we lived their and we did stand a few feet away from the oozing lava. Anyway... Because of all that I've never been especially nervous about weather. I'm not a tornado chaser, by any means, (though Twister is one of my very favorite movies of all time!) but I'm not one to run to Walmart every time there's a rain cloud either like certain Grannies I have! And yes we've told her Walmart is a bad place to be in a tornado - some habits are just too hard to break.

But all that was to say this...the bad weather on Tuesday made me nervous. Just realizing that I have four little ones to get to a safe spot and that I could be doing that by myself if hubby were at work was a little frightening. So was the fact that only one flashlight had batteries in it and once the power went out we had NO contact with the outside world (cell phones only worked some of the time). So I'm making some quick bad weather plans.

Here are directions from The Weather Channel on what to do in case of a tornado...

In a Frame Home
Make sure you have a portable radio,
preferably a NOAA weather radio, for information.
Seek shelter in the lowest
level of your home (basement or storm cellar). If there is no basement, go to an
inner hallway, a smaller inner room, or a closet. Keep away from all windows.
You can cushion yourself with a mattress, but do not use one to cover
yourself. Do cover your head and eyes with a blanket or jacket to protect
against flying debris and broken glass. Don't waste time moving mattresses
Keep your pet on a leash or in a carrier.
Multiple tornadoes can
emerge from the same storm, so do not go out until the storm has passed.
Do not leave a building to attempt to "escape" a tornado.
In a Mobile Home
Leave your mobile home immediately and take shelter elsewhere.
Try to get inside and seek a small protected space with no windows.
Avoid large-span roof areas such as school gymnasiums, arenas, or shopping
If you cannot get inside, crouch for protection beside a strong
structure, or lie flat in a ditch or low-lying area and cover your head and neck
with your arms or a piece of clothing.
In a Car
Ideally, you should avoid
driving when tornadoes or other kinds of dangerous weather threaten, because a
vehicle is a very unsafe place to be. If, however, this is not possible, stay as
calm as possible, and assess the situation.
Your best option might be to get
out of the car and lie flat in a ditch or other low-lying area that is
sufficiently deep enough to protect against the wind.
If you do so, beware
of water runoff from heavy rain that could pose a hazard; get as far away from
the vehicle as possible and shield your head from flying debris.
Or, if possible, take shelter immediately in a nearby building

I have lots to do around here to prepare including making a bad weather kit and buying a weather radio. Any ideas about what must be in the kit?


godlover said...

Just visiting your blog for the first time. I got your link off someone's link off someone else's blogroll... you know how it goes. Anyway I just wanted to say that I'm very impressed that you are thinking bad weather emergencies. My beloved was an Eagle Scout and their motto is be prepared. And I am Red-Cross-trained exEMT so I'm all for preparing for emergencies and you owe it to your children to take steps to prepare. We have a "grab and go" box that has all our super important documents in it so that if we have to flee due to fire or other emergency we can easily take it with us. We keep several gallons of water stored in our garage and we have a first aid box and an emergency box that holds things like simple tools you might need to shut of the gas or water, flash light, radio, flares, etc. I recommend something like that for everyone. About 15 years ago we had to evacuate due to a forest fire and all we had to do was grab our boxes and some clothing and we were on our way.

Calaveras County, CA

Shannon@Idylwild said...

Marj - Thank you so much for stopping by and for taking the time to comment. This is exactly what I'm trying to do. It seems so overwhelming when I think of all the individual tasks I need to do, but I'm working on preparing for the most likely emergencies and most neccessarry things first. Our power will go off again soon and we will need to eat:) Unfortunetly, doing things doesn't leave much time to blog about doing them:)

Susie Harris said...

I just found you and not sure how. Glad I did. Stay safe with that weather. Susie H

Shannon@Idylwild said...

Thanks for stumbling this way, Susie:)