In the next few weeks, we'll be going over how to prepare for two of the most common disasters, tornadoes and flooding. This week we'll go over how you can prepare your home, and yourself, for a tornado.
The first thing is knowing a tornado is coming. Whether it is staying up to date on your local weather or listening to the radio when the weather looks bad, the first step to being prepared is knowing what is happening around you. Knowing your area will help too, as some areas are more prone to tornadoes than others.
The next step is creating a plan ahead of time on what to do during a tornado. Your plan should include which room you'll take shelter in and what supplies you'll gather ahead of time.
The best place to go depends on your home, but it's generally recommended that you go to a central, windowless room on the bottom level of your home, which will usually be a bathroom.
Some supplies you might need to put in your emergency kit beforehand is bottled water, canned or dried food, a battery powered radio, extra batteries, a flashlight, a first aid kit and any prescription medications that are necessary.
The third and final step is preparing your personal property for a tornado. Unfortunately, some tornadoes are strong enough to tear through homes, regardless of the type of home, but there are some steps you can take beforehand to mitigate your losses if a tornado hits.
- Store all irreplaceable documents such as birth certificates, wills, and titles in an area that is waterproof and fireproof so they won't be destroyed.
- Make sure to purchase adequate home insurance for your area and document all serial numbers, along with pictures, of higher priced items like TVs, gaming systems and any other items you might file claims for.
- Make sure any home attachments are properly installed to your home because improper installation on structures like carports can increase damage to your home.
In the best case scenario, you'll never need to go through with your plans for a tornado, but it is much better to be prepared. We hope this helps you with those plans. For more info on preparing for a tornado, feel free to visit tornado tips by the Department of Homeland Security!