Tennessee’s Severe Weather Awareness Week reminds residents of important, lifesaving tips

Tennessee’s Severe Weather Awareness Week is February 20-26, 2022, and the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency and National Weather Service are asking Tennesseans to make severe weather planning and preparedness a priority.

The National Weather Service is planning a series of virtual training courses throughout the week. A list of courses and daily educational themes can be found on their website at weather.gov/ohx/swaw2022.

A highlight of the week will be the statewide tornado drill NWS will conduct at 10:30 AM EST on Wednesday, February 23, 2022. The drill will also include a statewide test of NOAA weather radios.

This year’s annual Severe Weather Awareness Week comes after a year of devastating floods, tornadoes, and severe weather.

Some basic severe weather advice includes:
*Never venture into high water, either on foot or in a vehicle.
*If you’re outside and hear thunder, go indoors immediately.
*Go to a basement or an innermost, first floor room in your home if you’re told to take shelter during a tornado warning.
*Know the location of and route to your office or building’s tornado shelter.
*Never try to outrun a tornado.
*Have an emergency plan ready at places where your family spends time – work, school, daycare, commuting, and outdoor events.
*Emergency plans should include where to meet, and who family members should check in with, if you are separated from family members during a severe weather emergency.

At a minimum, emergency preparedness kits should include one gallon of water per-day, per-person, and per-pet, for three to five days. The kit should also have enough non-perishable food for each family member, and pets, for three to five days.

Other items that every kit should include: flashlight, battery-powered radio, extra batteries, first aid kit, personal hygiene items, cell phone charger or solar charger, copies of important family documents, and extra supplies of medications, especially for those with chronic health conditions.