The 2023 Houston tornado caused great destruction in its wake. There were collapsed buildings, blocked roads, stranded motorists, and about 88000 people lost power. Tornadoes are natural disasters that will always leave us a little bit helpless in predicting them or escaping damage, even with the best-built tornado shelters. However, there are still ways to minimize damage and vulnerability by following some tried and tested tornado safety protocols.
1) Pay Attention to Weather Alerts
If you’re living in a tornado-prone area, you need to be aware of the weather conditions in your area because there’s no telling when a storm could turn into a tornado. Be sure to keep up to date with tornado warnings issued by local authorities and radio stations.
2) Have a Plan
Have a tornado storm drill in place for both at work and at home. Make sure everyone knows where to go and what to do in case of a tornado. This involves ensuring everyone is trained to make it to the safe room promptly and efficiently. If you have pets, you’ll need to take them to safety too.
3) Seek Shelter
If you don’t have a safe room or storm shelter installed, you still need to make it to relative safety. If you’re not at home when the tornado hits, one reliable practice is to seek an interior room on the lowest floor (preferably the basement) of the building you’re in and stay away from windows. Crouching and staying low, in general, are tornado safety best practices.
4) Have a Storm Kit Ready
Have an emergency kit with food, water, first aid supplies, and other essentials on hand. You should have a first aid kit and emergency food supplies (non-perishable goods) enough to sustain you and your family for three days. Other provisions include battery-operated flashlights and a battery-operated radio to stay up to date on any tornado updates (severity, path of destruction, etc.). Keep these supplies in your shelter room.
5) Don’t Get Complacent
Don’t be in a hurry to leave your shelter. Wait until the authorities say it’s okay to leave, and be prepared for aftershocks and more storms. In the aftermath of a tornado, try to stay away from the wreckage and debris of buildings until emergency personnel has declared them safe. Watch out for fallen power and utility lines. If you have to clean up debris, wear appropriate gear such as masks, thick-soled shoes, and gloves.
Tornado Shelter Experts in Texas
Part of ensuring tornado safety in Texas is having a strong, sturdy, and reliable tornado shelter. US Safe Room Tornado Shelters has been in the business of building affordable, customized safe rooms that meet (and exceed) FEMA criteria for 25 years. We offer services in multiple locations in Texas and Oklahoma and ensure installation within two weeks. Contact us to get a quote and get started on building a storm shelter that will keep you and your loved ones safe.