A statewide tornado drill will be conducted in conjunction with Severe Storms Preparedness Month, TODAY, Tuesday, March 16, 2021, at approximately 10:15 a.m EDT. The National Weather Service and Kentucky Broadcasters Association will issue a tornado warning test message. This is the rescheduled date from earlier this month when the drill was postponed.
Across Kentucky, including in Lexington, outdoor warning sirens will sound. Weather alert radios will activate. Local television and radio stations will broadcast the alert. Many mobile devices will alert with the message as well. In Lexington, the outdoor warning sirens will sound a test chime, followed by a test announcement. This drill will allow residents to practice tornado safety measures.
The broadcast test message will emphasize this is only a test of the alert system. During the test alert, all Kentuckians, businesses, hospitals, nursing homes, educators, and government agencies are encouraged to practice their tornado safety drills and update their emergency plans.
To conduct a tornado drill at home or work:
- Announce the start of the drill.
- Participants should move as quickly as possible to the designated tornado shelter.
- Once in the weather shelter area, participants should crouch as low as possible to the floor, facing down, covering their heads with their hands.
Wait 3-5 minutes. Then, announce the mock tornado has passed, and the drill is complete.
After the drill, perform an assessment. Determine if the shelter you chose was large enough for everyone. Was it easy to get to and uncluttered?
If you are caught outdoors and unable to access an indoor shelter during a tornado, lie flat in a nearby ditch or depression and cover your head with your hands during severe weather. If you’re in a car on the road, drive to the nearest sturdy structure, and take shelter inside. Do not park under a bridge or overpass as these can become “wind tunnels” for storm-swept debris. Be aware of the potential for flooding.
If you do not have a tornado/severe thunderstorm plan, make one using these guidelines:
- Designate a tornado/severe weather shelter in an interior room on the lowest level of a building, away from windows. Basements are best, but if there is no basement, choose an interior bathroom, closet, or other enclosed space on the lowest level of a building.
- Tell everyone where the designated shelter is and post the location.
- If you live in a mobile home or other manufactured housing, locate the nearest building where you can take shelter in case of a severe storm. NO MOBILE HOME IS A SAFE SHELTER FROM A TORNADO OR SEVERE THUNDERSTORM.