After what the Golden Belt experienced in the past couple weeks with the blizzards, we all know just what can be dished out by Mother Nature. But, as winter fades to spring, the area faces a different kind of weather threat – thunder storms and tornadoes.
The Barton County Commission and even Governor Sam Brownback signed proclamations to mark this past week as Severe Weather Awareness Week. There were storm spotter meetings and a statewide tornado drill.
Last year, Kansas had 94 tornados that started Feb. 28 in Wabaunsee County. Barton County had one twister, but Rush County had 12 of them.
You see, this is not something to be taken lightly and it is not too early to be thinking about the spring storm season.
“It is important to review your severe weather plans whether they are for your business, school or home,” said Amy Miller, Barton County emergency preparedness director. “Take time now to get yourself and your family ready for severe weather by making sure that all of your phone contacts are updated, check your designated tornado shelter in your home to make sure it is cleared out, and check your disaster kits to make sure those supplies are up-to-date. And if pets are part of your family, prepared a disaster kit for them as well.”
Miller also reminds folks to check the weather forecast often and be aware of changing conditions. “There are many ways to keep up to date with weather conditions including the radio, Internet, television, and NOAA weather radio. Being prepared and being aware are important steps in ensuring you and your family’s safety.”
But, we may have sirens and myriad of media sources for weather info, but the biggest thing we can do is exercise common sense.
Also, in the event of a storm, stay out of the way of emergency personnel. Rubber necking and loitering around a storm-ravaged area only hinders their efforts and puts on in danger themselves.
Take care and be prepared. Ultimately, our safety in our hands.