GEMA reminds residents of tornado prep for spring months - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

GEMA reminds residents of tornado prep for spring

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ATLANTA (WTOC) -

The Georgia Emergency Management Agency says thepeak of tornado activity typically occurs in the spring months and encouragesresident to prepare for seasonal storms.

"Whiletornadoes have occurred in every month of the year here in Georgia, March,April and May are often the most active months," said Charley English, directorof GEMA/Homeland Security, in a statement. "Regardless of when they strike,tornadoes are dangerously unpredictable, so it's critical to know in advancewhat to do and where to take shelter immediately. The Ready Georgia campaignprovides access to the essential tools and resources families need to be readyfor potential emergencies, like tornadoes."

GEMA'sReady Georgia website can help peoplecreate a disaster supply kit, develop a communications plan and to stayinformed with updates.

Forpreparedness tips on the go, download ReadyGeorgia's free mobile app for iPhones andAndroid phones.   

Toprepare, plan and stay informed about tornadoes, Ready Georgia recommends thesetips:  

Figure out ahead of time where youwill take shelter in case of a tornado. Keep blankets or a mattress here toprotect against falling debris.

Get to know tornado hazards terms. Atornado watch means a tornado is possible in your area. A tornado warning meansa tornado has been sighted and may be headed for your area, so you need to findshelter immediately.

If a tornado warning is ever issuedor you see a funnel cloud or tornado – take shelter immediately.

GEMA says storm cellars or basementsprovide the best protection. Climb under something sturdy, such as a heavytable or work bench, and cover yourself with blankets or a mattress.

If underground shelter is notavailable, go into an interior room or hallway on the lowest floor possible. Abathtub may offer some protection, but cover up with thick padding – such amattress or blankets – to protect against falling debris, if time allows. Ahelmet can offer some protection against head injury.

In a high-rise building, go to asmall interior room or hallway on the lowest floor possible. Go to the center ofthe room and avoid windows, doors and outside walls. 

Interior stairwells are usually goodplaces to take shelter. Stay out of elevators, as you could be trapped if poweris lost.

A vehicle, trailer or mobile homedoes not provide good protection from tornadoes. Get out immediately and headfor safety, preferably in a basement or sturdy building.

Stay in the shelter until danger haspassed.

Learn what warning system is used inyour county.

GEMA recommends having a NOAA weatherradio to monitor weather conditions by location.

Wireless Emergency Alerts are beingsent directly to newer cell phones by authorized government alertingauthorities. There is no need to download an app or subscribe to a service.

You can also get weather alerts andview real-time radar maps with the WTOC weather apps.

After a tornado, be sure to remainout of damaged buildings and stay clear of downed power lines.

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