A safe room serves to protect you from the force of a disaster. For example, a safe room will protect you from the powerful winds of a tornado. However, when spending time in a safe room during a disaster, other things can harm you.
Hunger and boredom, for example, are two negative feelings that people may experience if they haven’t stored the essentials in their room. Here are some of the problems you may face in a safe room and how to solve them.
With the weather system in the U.S. gearing up to be an extra tumultuous stormy season, homeowners are rushing to get the necessities, so they can hunker down, safe and sound. But for the parents among us with kids who will scream at every clap of thunder, this annual season requires even more care.
For anyone who has a family member with special needs, the sirens that ring in light of a tornado warning are the most horrifying sounds they can hear.
While tornadoes don’t typically strike without warning, it doesn’t take long for them to quickly become more devastating and move toward surrounding areas that weren’t originally in its path. This is why, even if you know a tornado watch was issued, you must take the right steps to help your special needs family member get to safety.
When the National Weather Service issues a tornado warning, your first step is usually to take your kids and family members and find safety in a tornado shelter. But how do you secure your household pets during the scramble?
If you’ve never had the misfortune to be in or near the path of a tornado, you may be a little confused as to what a tornado watch or tornado warning is and how it can help you get to safety.
A standard warning system in susceptible regions such as Texas, Oklahoma, and other states in the so-called Tornado Alley, tornado watches and warnings help people take action quickly, so they can get to safer quarters or prepare to do so, in case the weather conditions indicate that a tornado might hit.
Learning about Tornado Warning Systems
Tornado watches and tornado warnings are issued by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Storm Prediction Center.
Tornado watches are commonly issued just about a few hours before a storm is predicted to hit. It’s meant to alert the people about a developing threat. But more often than not, it doesn’t require that people seek shelter immediately.
Instead, it usually requires people to gather the family inside, prepare food, water, and shelter, just in case, and to keep a close eye at the sky, and the local weather channel. Keep in mind, tornadoes don’t just appear out of thin air, whistling and twirling with dirt within a few seconds and without warning. Tornadoes form under certain weather conditions. Tornado watches simply inform the people that such conditions are developing.
A clear message by the National Weather Service that a tornado was sighted, or that the weather radar is giving such indications should be taken seriously. Tornado warnings announce that there is a danger to property and life and people should seek shelter as quickly as possible. For those outside, this means finding shelters indoors near them. Do not stay in your vehicle. As for people at home, that’s where facilities like a safe room or a tornado shelter come in handy, especially if you have young children or older adults at home.
Staying Protected During a Tornado
Several reports and research studies have shown that storm and tornado shelters save lives. For communities and households, tornado shelters provide the security we need to protect ourselves.
You’ve received the news online or on your cellphone that a tornado might be near. Now’s the time to take action.
Tornadoes are fearsome creations and can be extremely unpredictable. So, don’t even think about going out of the house, so that you can check or take a photo of a tornado coming by. Here are some things you should do if a tornado is imminent.
How to Stay Safe During a Tornado
– Know the Difference Between a Tornado Watch and Tornado Warning
According to the National Weather Service, a tornado watch is a sign to be prepared. This means that either a tornado could touch down in your area or it’s in the watch area. In such circumstances, you must gather all members of the house, gather blankets, wear jackets and bike helmets to protect yourself from any flying debris and wait, just in case.
With a tornado warning, you must take action. This means a tornado has touched down and could be headed your way. If you’re in a house, go to the lowest floor, or a room in the deepest part of the house, preferably a closet. If you’re in a mobile home, move to the closest shelter or facility to stay safe.
– Create a Plan and Know Where to Go
If you don’t have a safe room already installed on your property, you may have a problem on your hands, especially if you have a bigger family.
Prevent injuries by identifying which areas of your home are safe. If you have a basement, head down there and use blankets or sleeping bags to cover everyone up. Do not go anywhere near the windows, water heaters, gas lines, or wires. If you have an emergency kit, do not forget to bring it with you. Also, keep a fire extinguisher handy. Also, keep battery-powered flashlights and a pack of new batteries as well as a battery-powered radio with you so that you can stay informed.
– Take Shelter the Right Way
Cover all members of the family with the blanket or sleeping bag so that they can stay safe from debris or flying glass. If there’s a table where you’re keeping shelter, get under it. If you have pets, keep them in your arms and quiet so that their barking or wrangling doesn’t cause more problems. Also, if you have a small child, it’s best to use earplugs and keep their head down, so they don’t get scared.
Taking Care of the Future
As a parent, there’s so much you have to deal with when preparing for a tornado. So, make things easier for yourself by investing in a safe room.
You just received a tornado warning, and you can already feel the monster coming near. The first and only task on the list is to get your family to safety in your newly-installed safe room.
But is it equipped to keep you comfortable? Given that you don’t know when it’ll be safe to come back out, most experts recommend equipping your tornado shelter with all the necessities you and your family will need for an extended period.
Here is a list of all the things we think are necessary for your safe room emergency kit:
Food and Water
You should have enough food and water to last at least 5–7 days, per person. Although this may seem too much, you have to be prepared if an F4 or F5 tornado were to make landfall.
Baby food, formula, clean bottles, etc., if needed
In addition to the above products, you’ll also need one gallon of drinkable water per day per person. And keep in mind that even water can expire, so keep an eye on the expiration date for each bottle. Additionally, buy disposable utensils, bowls, and glasses so that each person can have their own.
With clothing, your main focus is to keep everyone warm. For that, prepare your shelter by storing the following in an airtight box, so they’re kept safe from any critters or moisture:
Warm clothes such as jackets, hats, and gloves
Extra clothing if your clothing gets damaged
First Aid Kit
In addition to all the necessities for a first aid kit, other things you’ll need to pack beforehand include:
Over-the-counter pain medication
All prescription medication for each person of the family
Instant cold compress
In addition to necessary sanitary supplies such as toilet paper, hand sanitizer and more, other things you’ll need, include:
Extra diapers and wipes
An extra trash bag for the diapers
Portable tissue boxes
Preparing For the Season
Especially if you live in Tornado Alley or any of the surrounding areas, you must take the right step for your safety.
At US Safe Rooms, we encourage all customers to invest in tornado shelters and safe rooms, so they have a secure facility to move to in case of a tornado. So, why not put your savings to good use?
US Safe Rooms offers safe rooms in Texas and Oklahoma. Get in touch with us, and prepare for tornado season the right way.
Tornadoes are weather events that tend to be incredibly violent and unpredictable. These forceful columns of air tend to exert so much force they wreak havoc and damage things that are in their path, from cars to concrete structures.