As we enter the most active period of severe weather season, it is exceptionally important to know what to do in the case of strong to severe storms. Damaging winds, large hail, and tornadoes can all play a factor in your spring plans.
If you are fairly new to DFW, or the North Texas region in general, you will quickly learn that mother nature has her ups and downs. If you've lived here a while, you have likely had a taste of everything we have to offer, and then some! But in the midst of severe weather, it is absolutely mandatory to have a plan in place in the case of severe weather. The first topic we will discuss is damaging winds.
Damaging winds are a very common occurrence here in the southern plains, especially here in North Texas. Damaging Winds can and, more often
than you may think, are MORE destructive than tornadoes, so it is important that you are not caught off guard.
1. Seek shelter indoors, preferrably away from doors and windows and in the centermost
room of your home. Just like a tornado, debris can quite literally be catapulted
through doors and windows, potentially injuring you if you are standing in front of a window.
2. You likely have heard this many times, but we highly recommend you have a way to recieve watches and warnings in the event
that the power goes out. Whether it is the local severe weather coverage on TV, or a weather radio, have a way to recieve information.
3. Find the innermost room in your house (preferrably lowest floor if possible), and stay there until the storm has passed.
4. Avoid travel during events that pose a wind threat, this includes non-convective events when there may not even be a cloud in the sky.
Gusty winds on high profile vehicles can physically lift the body, and that little bit of lift reduces traction between
your tires and the pavement, making you much more prone to losing control of your vehicle. If you must travel, ensure your
tires are properly inflated, and slow down!
Unfortunately, flooding is one of the more common types of hazards, especially coastal states. Luckily, there are many ways
you can prepare yourself and your family in the event that flooding occurs where you live.
1. Repeating: BE INFORMED! Always have a way to recieve watches and warnings. Your local National Weather Service will always
have the latest information, forecasts, alerts, and everything you need to stay informed.
2. Contact your local emergency management director! They can give you the latest information regarding your home or business.
"Are there any dams in the area?" , "What is my risk of flooding?" "Is this area prone to flooding problems?"
3. Build an emergency kit! Depending on personal wants and needs for your safety and survival, we have attached a link to
an official guide to building one for yourself. You can also pick up pre-built kits from your local grocery store,
but we still recommend building one for yourself. We also highly recommend making a copy of all of your personal records,
whether that be a photo on your device(s) of choice, or a physical copy, keep them in a safe place at all times.
4. Finally, the NOW portion of this guide. Flooding is occuring, and you need to act NOW, every second matters.
- GET TO HIGHER GROUND
- AVOID LOW LYING AREAS
- CONSISTENTLY monitor media for the latest emergency information.
- Turn Around, Don't Drown! Vehicles can easily be swept away in two feet of water,
do not attempt to drive through any collected water.
- DO NOT DRIVE THROUGH BARRIERS! Road barriers are set up for a reason, the structure
is very likely unstable and unsafe to cross.
We set large hail right next to tornadoes and damaging winds. Both can cause major property damage, injuries and even death. Luckily, a lot of hail is just small enough to cause little to no significant damage. But hailstones become increasingly larger during the severe weather season, when all of the right ingredients frequently align. Here's what you can do to prepare for hail, and what to do in the event that hail threatens your home or business:
1. Bring pets indoors, hailstones can and will injure your pets, or livestock that may be exposed to the outdoors.
2. Find a substantial shelter for your vehicles, hail can and will easily bust your windshield and windows, and will
also make for a pricey visit to the repair shop.
3. Have your roof inspected, hire a professional to give you feedback on things you can do to improve the integrity of your roof. If possible, make repairs and fix anything that may compromise your safety! We recommend Platinum Contracting LLC (veteran owned) for all of your roofing needs!
4. Be prepared for power outages, have multiple ways of receiving watches and warnings. Information is important!
5. If you are driving a vehicle and you are caught in a hailstorm, slow down or stop (NOT UNDER OVERPASSES). Once pulled over, turn your back to any glass elements in your vehicle and cover yourself with blankets to avoid injury from any glass that may break.
Lastly, tornadoes. Tornadoes are violently rotating columns of air that most frequently develop with supercell thunderstorms. Unfortunately, tornadoes give the least amount of lead time (time to prepare) out of the rest of the threats. Here are some of the things you can do if you find yourself under a warning:
1. DO NOT DELAY! If you have a tornado shelter or basement, GET IN IT. If you do not have a tornado shelter, get on the lowest and most interior room of your home or business (bathroom, stairwell, closet) and put as many walls in between you and the outside as possible. Have bicycle helmets? Use them. Cover yourself with a mattress, pillows, anything to protect you from flying debris.
2. HAVE A WAY TO RECIEVE THE LATEST WEATHER INFORMATION, including forecasts, current weather and current alerts in effect so you can decide what you are going to do once the storm has passed. NTXWC is a perfect example of this.
3. If you know of family or friends who have the potential to be impacted by tornadoes (or any type of severe weather), make some time to let them know what's happening. Link them to the latest forecast, watches and warnings from the National Weather Service. If they don't know what to do if a tornado nears, send them this guide! Share some of your knowledge with them! After all, not all heroes wear capes.
As always, we are glad to be serving North Texas and providing the latest weather information and forecasts. If you have any questions, concerns, or even if you'd like to add to this guide, our DM's are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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