Posted by: Kelley Dees | April 25, 2011

When to Seek Shelter: A look at severe weather safety

When a storm is on its way, do you know when to seek shelter? What do you do to prepare?

Warning the public of severe weather has dramatically improved in recent decades. This has come with the invention of the radio, television, and the internet. Having access to a weather radio will come in handy. Some states even have free weather radio programs (just doing an internet search for “free weather radios in” and insert your state or county will tell you whether this is available in your area). If you want to purchase a weather radio, NOAA recommends a receiver which carries the Public Alert logo. Here is a list of places to buy a weather radio. Watching your local newscast can prepare you early in the day can inform you if thunderstorms could develop later that day.

The Public Alert Logo: Recommended by NOAA

When a strong cell is in the path of your home, you will want to seek shelter. The center-most room within the lowest floor of your house is the safest place. You want this room to be free of windows also. If you’re in a pinch, a bathtub may do. Wherever you are, you want to get others and yourself in the center of your basement or tornado shelter.

When driving, your best judgment becomes more important if you notice a tornado. If the tornado is far enough away from you, you will want to drive away from the tornado (perpendicular to its path) towards clear skies. If the tornado is close to you, the best option is to get out of the car and lay on your stomach within a ditch or some other surface that slopes downward.

Perpendicular path away from tornado

Myths about storms:

  1. Do not spend time opening all of the windows in your home.
  2. Under a bridge or highway underpass is possibly the WORST cover you could take from a tornado.
  3. The second worst place is a mobile home. They do not physically attract tornadoes, but mobile home parks are often called tornado magnets.

Special thanks to Joe Hansel, morning meteorologist for KCWY channel 13 in Casper, Wyoming, for sharing this information. Check out Joe’s Weather Blog for more weather information.

This information is provided courtesy of the Wyoming AgrAbility Project. For more information, visit our website or call toll-free at 866-395-4986.



  1. Interesting!

  2. Nice Blog with Excellent information

  3. Just wanna comment that you have a very nice site, I love the style it really stands out.

    • Thank you! The picture at the top of the page is from right here in beautiful Wyoming!

  4. An attention-grabbing dialogue is priceless. I feel that it is best to write more on this subject. It might not be a taboo topic, but typically people don’t speak enough on such topics.

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