Monday, May 20, 2013

Emergency Preparedness: Tornado Season

"Storm Clouds"
(C) Allen Pearson
Emergency Preparedness is an important topic year round.  But, here in the early part of the spring season, it’s barkingly necessary to write about it.

Why?  It seems spring is the worst time for storms that are harder to predict or to prepare for tornadoes.   In the summer to late fall, there are hurricanes which you should prepare for, however,  you usually have more time to prepare- not the last minute or last second "surprise I'm here" act like you have with tornadoes. 
My human and I have never been directly in a tornado.  We have been through “Tornado Watches” or “Tornado Warnings.”  Hopefully that will be all we have to worry about but we've prepared for the worst, as a just in case. 
  • A “Tornado Watch” means conditions are right for a tornado in the watch area.  
  • A “Tornado warning” means a tornado has been spotted in the warned area and you should put your emergency plans in action. 

"Storm!!"(C) Allen Pearson
At home, our emergency plan of action for a tornado is to head for the basement or the hall bathroom.  I can’t make myself go down the stairs to the basement so we use alternative is to head to the hall bathroom since it is the innermost room of our house and curl up together.  Despite my stubbornness, my humans refuse to leave me upstairs alone so we head to the hall bathroom during a Tornado Warning.

I suggest that you practice your Tornado Emergency Plan a few times each winter before the spring season begins.  

If we are in the car when a tornado warning is announced on the radio or a Tornado hits, now this depends on whether it’s an actual tornado or a warning for one as well as the localities.   And, our distance from home.  This is where common sense and listening to the weather will come into play!!  If we cannot get home safely, Dad will put the leash on me, grab the folder about me and head to the nearest shelter and hide.  Dad will hold on to me for dear life and I will hold onto him for dear life.

What is this folder about me?  The folder contains a copy of my vaccination record, a data sheet which lists everything you could ever want to know about me in an emergency, and several pictures of me.  He keeps one in his car, mom’s car, and the emergency bag we bought from Doggy Baggage.

The Doggy Baggage?  It comes in handy for any and all emergencies.  It’s great for packing all of the items you would need should you have to evacuate your home due to an emergency.  It’s difficult to prepare for a tornado since seconds count and those few seconds need to be spent getting to a safe place which makes it hard for humans to grab anything but me.

It’s urgent that your human has put a dog tag with your information on it on you or have you micro-chipped.  And, you could have your emergency information folder in the Doggy Baggage!

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