Apr 9, 2018 | By: Shirelle Moore

Beltrami County Offers Safety Tips During MN Severe Weather Awareness Week

“Before long, the winter weather advisories and winter storm warnings will be replaced with severe thunderstorm and tornados watches and warnings,” says Christopher Muller, emergency services director for the Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office.

It’s Minnesota Severe Weather Awareness week. Each day represents something different, and Beltrami County participates in them all. Monday is meant to let people know the difference between watches and warnings.

“Watches mean that conditions are favorable for the development of severe weather and/or tornadoes. Warnings mean that they are occurring, likely to occur or are imminent. Advisories also issued for impactful weather events that don’t quite meet the criteria and threshold for watches and warnings,” says Muller.

Tuesdays is for storms, hail and lightning.

Muller says, “Hail over an inch in diameter can cause significant and substantial property damage, and you don’t always need to have a tornado to have those impactful wind events.”

On Wednesday, the conversation shifts to flooding.

“If you ever encounter water going across the roadway, assume that the road isn’t there. It may have washed out, and we always want to remind people – turn around, don’t drown. If you encounter water across roadway, don’t drive through it,” says Muller.

It may not seem like it today, but soon all the snow on the ground will melt. When that day finally comes, it’s best to be prepared for the new weather that come with living in Minnesota. Thursday is tornado drill day, so expect to hear a siren.

“The tornado drill is an opportunity for businesses, residents and people as their traveling about to practice what they would do if a tornado were witnessed, warned or if you encounter one in your daily activity, so we want people to know where their shelter is and where they would seek shelter,” says Muller.

On Friday, we move to extreme heat. While it’s rare we ever get into the triple digits in Minnesota, it’s important to stay hydrated and be mindful of loved ones.

“If you ever got back into your vehicle after it sat in the sun, it’s like a greenhouse in there. It gets very hot very quickly. That’s why you always want remind people to check the back seat for children, pets. Never leave children and pets in vehicles as it can get very dangerously hot in a short amount of time,” says Muller.

For some final safety tips, make sure to always check the weather before you head out for the day. Also, listen to safety alerts. Last, if you see some abnormal weather activity happening, you can always report it to the police.

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