Lexington Emergency Management is asking residents and visitors to stay alert for severe weather risks this week. The National Weather Service is predicting intense and widespread severe thunderstorms including tornados in some areas.
Remain alert, keep your cell phone charged, and take steps to prepare now to potentially save lives and protect property when severe weather strikes.
Severe weather, which could include intense, long-track tornadoes, is expected to develop through the mid-south, including Kentucky, starting today and extending through tomorrow.
Anyone living in these areas should take steps to prepare now ahead of the storms:
- Have several ways to receive alerts. Download the BeReady App to receive real-time emergency alerts from the National Weather Service. Check to make sure your NOAA Weather Radio is operating. If you don’t have one, now is a good time to get one. Most department, sporting goods, and big box stores have them in stock. Sign up for LEXALERTS so you receive alerts via email, phone and text.
- Pay attention to local warnings and follow the safety guidance of your local officials.
- Know where the storm-safe area or room is in your home. Know where you’ll take shelter if you’re at school or at work.
- Make sure your emergency kit is stocked and includes non-perishable food, cash, charging devices, a flashlight, and batteries in case of power outages.
- Consider any special needs you and your household members might have. Older adults and people with disabilities may need extra assistance to prepare for the storm. Visit https://www.bereadylexington.com/make-a-plan/ for more information about general preparedness and preparedness for seniors and persons with disabilities.
- Don’t forget the needs of your pets. Many shelters do not take household pets, so remember to create a plan and have supplies available for your animals. Here’s a checklist for a pet emergency kit.
- Check on your neighbors. As you prepare your family and loved ones for a disaster, check on neighbors in your community to see if they are doing the same or if they might need help to get started.
- Prepare your property for dangerous weather by clearing out any large or loose materials. Remove dead trees, hanging branches and loose objects in your yard or patio that could be dangerous during severe winds.
Create an emergency plan with your family. Use the new FEMA “Make a Plan” form to get started. You can easily save an electronic copy or share it with other family members. Find the planning guide here: https://www.ready.gov/plan-form
Some other pre-storm reminders:
- Keep your cell phone charged. A cell phone power pack is good to have as well. Make sure the power pack is fully charged.
- Check flashlights and other battery-powered equipment. Check that you have extra batteries.
- Make sure your first aid kit is fully stocked. Extra medicines and prescriptions should be current. Dispose of outdated materials and replace them with new medicines.
- Fill up your vehicle gas tank
- Test generators to make sure they start. Purchase fresh fuel. Make directions on how to power essential appliances in your home. REMEMBER: NEVER RUN A GENERATOR INDOORS OR INSIDE A GARAGE.
- Check the last time you made or updated a home inventory. A quick way to do this is snap pictures of every room with your cell phone. Store them in an online file.
- Check your homeowner’s insurance to make sure you have adequate coverage. If you rent, consider purchasing insurance for your belongings, especially computers and electronics.
- Double-check your emergency kit.