The footage and aftermath of the tornado that ripped through Moore, Okla. on May 20 has stunned and saddened the nation. The E5 tornado with winds over 200 mph devastated more than 17 miles of community, according to The Weather Channel.
Although tornadoes of this magnitude are rare, this tragedy has left many people asking what steps they can take to prepare for a tornado situation.
Have a communications plan
- Identify a friend or relative who lives out-of-state that all family members can contact to notify they are safe.
- Ensure everyone knows the emergency contact's phone number and has a phone, pre-paid card or coins available to make the call.
- Program the ICE (In Case of Emergency) number in your phone. If you are unable to make the call yourself, emergency personnel often check ICE listings in your phone.
- Teach all family members how to text. During network disruptions, texts have a better chance of getting through than a phone call.
To get started, use the FEMA Family Emergency Plan template, a free tool to help you organize your information.
Secure your home
Whether you live in tornado alley or simply want to know how to prepare in case of an extreme weather situation in your area, the American Red Cross offers several suggestions for preparing your residence for a tornado. These include:
- During storms, stay tuned into local news or radio for tornado watches and warnings.
- Have a safe room or gathering area. If there is not a basement or storm cellar, choose an interior room free of windows on the lowest floor.
- Practice tornado drills periodically.
- Trim back branches and remove damaged tree limbs.
- Secure any lawn furniture or objects – such as trash cans or potted plants – that could become projectiles.
For more information, visit OSHA’s Tornado Preparedness and Response page. Listed there are resources ranging from basic supply kit lists and safety checklists to additional links for more reading.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Moore, Okla. residents as they begin the difficult task of picking up the pieces and rebuilding their community.
About Accuform Signs
Accuform Signs, located in Brooksville, FL, is the leading manufacturer of facility safety identification products. Founded in 1976, Accuform Signs sells products to a network of distributors throughout North America, South America and Asia. From personalized safety signs, safety tags and labels, to traffic safety and lockout/tag out products, Accuform Signs provides the products and sales support for the distributors that define the safety industry.