Tornado Safety Tips

If you are in a tornado watch area, here are three quick tips to keep in mind:

  1. Listen to NOAA Weather Radio or to commercial radio or television newscasts for the latest information. In any emergency, always listen to the instructions given by local emergency management officials.
  2. Be alert to changing weather conditions. Look for approaching storms.
  3. Look for the following danger signs:
  • Dark, often greenish sky
  • Large hail
  • A large, dark, low-lying cloud (particularly if rotating)
  • Loud roar, similar to a freight train

If you see approaching storms or any of the danger signs, be prepared to take shelter immediately.

If you are in a car during a tornado, you should take the following actions:

  • Stay in the car with the seat belt on. Put your head down below the windows; cover your head with your hands and a blanket, coat or other cushion, if possible.
  • If you can safely get lower than the level of the roadway, leave your car and lie in that area, covering your head with your hands.
  • Do not get under an overpass or bridge. You are safer in a low, flat location.
  • Never try to outrun a tornado in a car or truck.

What is the difference between a tornado watch and a tornado warning?
A Tornado Watch means tornadoes are possible in your area. Remain alert for approaching storms.

A Tornado Warning means a tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar – time to take cover!

The local National Weather Service office issues tornado and severe thunderstorm warnings.