OUR VIEW: Be prepared for when severe storms strike

Published 6:15 am Wednesday, March 30, 2022

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As we’re writing this, severe storms are on the horizon for tonight and tomorrow morning. By the time you’re reading this, either the storms are impacting our area (for those early birds out there) or already off to our east.

With that said, we realize this message might be a tad late for this storm system, but we know more are to come. It’s spring, which is severe weather season in the south.

That means now is the time to prepare for severe weather. Have a way to get watches and warning information overnight. While we don’t mean it personally, we don’t recommend being one of those people who shrug their shoulders and go to bed without a care in the world when bad storms are coming. “If I make it, I make it” many of them say.

While we guess that’s true, being prepared and having a plan is a much better course of action.

Talk to your family now about the safest place in your home, away from doors and windows. An interior hallway often makes a good place to huddle if a tornado warning is issued.

You also need to know where you live on a map. Be able to identify your location so you’ll know if the storm is heading your way.

If you’ve ever watched a meteorologist’s page during severe weather coverage, you see comment after comment where people are asking “but what about my city?” “Will the weather hit here?”

Some of those locations are hundreds of miles away or clearly not being impacted by the storm. It’s no wonder studies have shown that a higher-than-you’d-expect percentage of Americans can’t read a map.

You also need a good way to get weather information, and by that, we mean staying away from amateur social media pages. We’ll always post weather information straight from the source, with that being the National Weather Service, which issues watches and warnings. When a storm is incoming, we’re always tracking the NWC’s Storm Prediction Center as well as information put out by the National Weather Service in Birmingham and in Peachtree City.

Those are the sources for the best weather information, and its information all meteorologists use when creating a forecast. But there are other ways to get warnings as well. There are countless apps that will take you up in the middle of the night with weather information. Troup County has an emergency alert system too.

Don’t sleep on bad weather when it’s coming our way. Find a credible source for weather information, make a plan and be ready, just in case.