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Stay Weather Aware and Weather Prepared This Tornado Season!

I've had many encounters with tornadic activity over the years, and it's no secret that Twister is one of my favorite movies. God help you, if you ever watch it with me, I will quote every line! However, living in Oklahoma, if I see the storm spotter trucks out, I know that I need to watch the weather very closely and monitor our situation. 

While many in this state sleep through tornado sirens, or get in their vehicles and chase the storms, I turn on the news, plug in my phone and turn on google maps, that way I can map the street locations of the storm. Now, I do go out on my back porch occasionally and check the sky, but sometimes you have to to make sure there are no funnels forming above that need to be reported to the local weather service. We begin preparing for the storm season usually in February or Early March, but honestly, you should always be prepared because severe weather can strike at anytime.

 Part of our Tornado Bag

We have what we call a tornado bag, which is a backpack that we have carefully put together with supplies we might need in case of an emergency. We make a list of all financial institutions and bills with contact info, and put it into a waterproof baggie. We make copies of all insurance policies , registrations, legal documents, medications, and doctors, along with our passports and copies of our drivers licenses. This may seem silly, but if your home is damaged enough, you will need to be in contact with insurance agents and other emergency service workers that will need proof or residence, and insurance to help. I also put my purse in hall bathroom, which is our central most location in our home. 

Our normal list of items we include in our Tornado Emergency Bag:

  • First Aide Kit
  • Trauma Kit
  • Gloves
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Baby Wipes
  • Toilet Paper
  • Paper Towels
  • A Change of Clothes-for each person
  • Bottled Water
  • Pre-Packaged Snacks- Granola bars, Peanuts, Cheese Crackers, Beef Jerky, Protein Bars
  • Weather Radio Walkie Talkies- You never know if you'll be separated from a loved one and phone lines might be down.
  • Any and all medications, including those for our pets
  • A Knife
  • Some Cash- You may not be able to use cards if your town has no electricity, internet, or phone lines
  • Items for our dogs
  • Leashes
  • Harnesses
  • 2, Gallon Baggies of Dog Food
  • Plastic Bowls for food and water

I keep tennis shoes in the bathroom, with a pair of socks in each. You don't want to get caught during a storm without shoes.  We usually add items to the bag as the season goes on, and we think of thigs we may have missed or might want to have. This year was a little difficult to stock our bag since many things are sparse, but as we find the items in local stores or online, they'll be added to our bag. 

Get your family involved in packing a bag, make it enjoyable for them to help ease their fears. Develop a severe weather plan, and practice it with your family. In Oklahoma, every Wednesday at noon, there are tornado siren tests, and it helps keep us aware of where the sirens are located, but to also make sure that they are in working order. If you live in an area that uses tornado sirens, make sure that your children understand what the sirens are, and to not be afraid of them. Sirens can save lives! 

Severe weather can be nerve wracking, but you don't have to be nervous about being prepared. Stay safe and stay weather aware!

1 comment

  1. This is a great list of items. It is so important to be prepared.


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