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7 Tips to Prepare for a Tornado

A road sign that reads storm warning to depict how to prepare for a tornado

Tornados can create intense winds that go over 200 miles an hour. The rotating columns of wind can flip vehicles and tear down homes. Also, the wind can stir up the debris that causes even more chaos. As scary as this sounds, you can protect yourself if you know how to prepare for a tornado. Follow these tornado safety tips so you will be ready if a hurricane strikes. 

1. Create a Tornado Preparedness Kit for Your Home and Vehicle 

You need to create a tornado preparedness kit in case a tornado strikes. First, you’ll need one for your home, and it should contain:

  • First-aid supplies
  • Flashlight
  • Batteries
  • Self-powered radio
  • Emergency signal light
  • Extra clothes

Keep a second tornado preparedness kit in your vehicle in case you are outside when a tornado strikes. This kit will be a bit different from the one you keep at home. It should include:

  • Water bottles
  • Granola bars
  • First aid kit
  • Whistle
  • Weather radio
  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Cash 
tornado prepardness kit with water, radio, flashlight, and several emergency supplies

2. Store Important Documents

Hopefully, a tornado will not strike your home, but it could happen. To prepare for a tornado, you need to store your essential documents in a water and fire-proof safe. This includes your birth certificate, social security card, will, ownership certificates, and insurance policies. Also, take a household inventory and store it as well in case you have to make an insurance claim. 

3. Choose a Safe Room

You need to choose a safe room that your family will go to in case of a tornado. If you have a basement or storm cellar, use it. If not, select a room that sits on the lowest level of your home. Make sure it does not have any windows. Bring your home’s tornado preparedness kit into the room. You should also put something there to protect your head, such as a blanket or pillow. 

After you choose your safe room, considering having it reinforced for additional protection. This will make it harder for the high winds to tear down the walls. 

4. Trim Your Trees

Large tree branches can fall on your home during a tornado. Protect your house and your loved ones by trimming your trees if needed. Remove any dead branches so they won’t get caught up in the high winds. 

5. Practice Safety Drills

Everyone in your home should know what to do in case of a tornado. Run drills, so it becomes second nature for your loved ones.

6. Listen to Local News or Radio

If you notice signs of a tornado, listen to local news or radio. Local stations will give you information about the impending storm. Then you will know when it’s time to put your tornado safety plan into action. 

7. Seek Shelter When Needed

Now it’s time to look at what to do during a tornado. If a tornado warning is issued and you are at home, go to your designated shelter area immediately. If you are at someone else’s house, find the safest room in the home. It should be at the lowest level and not have any windows. Cover your neck and head in case the walls of the house are breached.

If you are outside, find a flat, low location to wait it out. Do not go under a bridge or overpass. If you do not have anything in your vehicle to protect you, use your arms to cover your neck and head. Be mindful of flying debris. 

Now that you know how to prepare for a tornado, create a tornado preparedness checklist with the steps so you’ll be ready when the time comes.

Another great way to protect your home from tornado damage is by getting a homeowner’s insurance policy. Did you know that Freeway can help you find the right coverage for your needs and budget? Start your free home insurance quote online or over the phone today!

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