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Wednesday, 7 September 2011

What To Do In The Event of A Tornado

Tornados are incredibly destructive forces of nature. They can obliterate infrastructure and endanger the lives of communities, as was demonstrated in Goderich, Ontario last month. Knowing how to prepare for a tornado, and how to react to one, is of the utmost importance, especially if you live in a high-risk area.

Preparation
As the old adage goes, an "ounce of prevention equals a pound of cure." Having the right supplies ready in the event of a tornado could be the difference between life and death.
  • When a tornado warning is issued, be sure to gather food, water, essential medications, important documents, roadmaps, batteries, flashlights, a cell phone, utility knife, first-aid kit, whistle and gasoline. Blankets and warm clothing are also important to have prepared. 
  • Keep a battery or crank powered radio handy to listen to emergency broadcasts. 
  • Write down important emergency phone numbers. 
During
  • If you're indoors, take shelter in the basement or lowest floor possible. 
  • Do not light a match or lighter. Tornados can damage gas lines and even small flames could potentially cause a fire. 
  • Avoid windows, which can shatter and cause an obvious safety hazard. 
  • Try to hide behind or under heavy furniture. 
  • In public buildings, always take shelter in the lowest level. Avoid open spaces and find a small closet, bathroom, or hallway that has no windows. 
  • Do NOT try to outrun a tornado in a car or on foot. Get out of your vehicle and find a building; if there are no buildings nearby, find a low-lying ditch and lay prone. 
Aftermath
  • After the hurricane has passed, check on your family and tend to any injuries they may have sustained. 
  • If your home has sustained damage, be careful when exiting as structural damage could cause a wall or beam to fall. 
  • Call emergency services in the event of any serious injuries. 
  • Check on neighbours to see if anyone else needs assistance.  

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