Severe Weather Awareness Week Encourages Public To Have Plans In Case Of Emergency
According to the National Weather Service, Minnesota experiences an average of 40 tornadoes every year. With Severe Weather Awareness Week, agencies in Minnesota are encouraging communities to know what to do when severe weather approaches.
During Severe Weather Awareness Week, each day is spent focusing on a different severe weather topic that affects residents in Minnesota, starting Monday with alerts and warnings. Tuesday covers severe weather, lightning and hail; Wednesday floods; Thursday tornadoes; and Friday focuses on extreme heat.
“With summer severe weather preparedness and also winter weather preparedness, we always encourage residents to create a plan, have a kit. If they lose power, do they have – can they be home for 36 hours and have food and medications to be at home. Also, put a communication plan together,” explained John Bowen, Crow Wing County Emergency Management Director.
The Brainerd Lakes Area was hit with particularly severe thunderstorms in the summer of 2015 and 2016, leaving thousands of Crow Wing County residents without power. The county hopes that by focusing on severe weather preparedness during this week, they are able to prevent tragedy when severe weather hits.
“The biggest thing the Crow Wing County area or Northern Minnesota is our severe thunderstorms. We get those straight-line winds we’ve had here the last, 2015 and 2016. Almost every year we get a few big thunderstorms that come through with those straight-line winds. We have a lot of campers out there and people on the lakes,” added Bowen. “So, have that plan in place so if you’re at a campground and severe weather comes in, you know where to go.”
Every year during Severe Weather Awareness Week, Minnesota puts on a statewide tornado drill. The drill was set for tomorrow but has been cancelled due to the incoming snow storm.