It Pays to Prepare for Severe Weather

By Jolyn Johnston-Myers
April 26, 2016

National Weather Service forecasts for the next few days indicate severe weather for much of the state. In light of these forecasts, the Kansas Division of Emergency Management is reminding Kansans to be prepared.

Significant severe thunderstorms will be possible across parts of the southern and central Great Plains Tuesday afternoon into the nighttime hours. Storms are expected to form after 3 p.m. along and ahead of a dry line across central Kansas and track northeast across north central and northeast Kansas through the evening.

Tornadoes, some strong, will be possible, in addition to very large hail and damaging winds, and localized flash floods. Much of the state is under a moderate risk or enhanced risk for severe thunderstorms.

Kansans are urged to check their emergency supplies and review their home emergency plan with every member of the family. A home emergency kit should include everything needed for each family member to survive for a minimum of three days without power. Kits should include one gallon of water per person per day; nonperishable, high energy foods; a battery powered NOAA weather radio; flashlights; extra batteries; a safe, alternate heat source; blankets; medications and other essentials.

Pet owners are also reminded include their pets in their emergency preparations.

Discuss your home emergency plan with each other in advance, including what shelter locations are designated at home or away from home. Pick a meeting location for after the danger has passed so everyone can be accounted for.

If an emergency alert is issued for your area via emergency sirens, TV or radio alert or weather radio, take shelter immediately. The safest place in the home is the interior part of a basement. Avoid taking shelter where there are heavy objects, such as pianos or refrigerators, on the area of floor that is directly above you. They could fall though the floor if the tornado strikes your house.

If there is no basement, go to the lowest floor in a small center room such as a bathroom or closet, under a stairwell, or in an interior hallway with no windows. Crouch as low as possible to the floor, facing down; and cover your head; a motorcycle or bicycle helmet is good protection. For added protection, get under something sturdy such as a heavy table or workbench. A bath tub may offer partial protection. Because of the danger of broken glass and other sharp debris, be sure to wear shoes or have extra shoes as part of your emergency kit.

If you live in a mobile home, do not stay there. Leave immediately and go to the designated shelter or a nearby building.

Additional information about preparing an emergency kit may be found online

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