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The original item was published from 6/4/2013 10:51:56 AM to 7/1/2013 12:05:02 AM.

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Posted on: June 4, 2013

[ARCHIVED] Emergency Notifications – Are You Prepared for a Tornado?

If an emergency occurs, where do you take shelter and how would you receive your emergency notifications? It’s best to plan ahead for shelter and ensure the capability of receiving emergency notifications through various methods rather than relying on only one system. Some of the ways you may receive alerts/warning require action on your part ahead of time. Here are some simple ways to receive emergency alerts and actions you need to take to take shelter and participate to receive the notification from each system:

Tornado Sheltering - Where and When?The best place is in the center of the basement under a sturdy workbench or under the stairway. If you do not have a basement, go to the lowest level of a sturdy building and put as many walls between you and the outside as possible and avoid areas with exterior windows and doors. In a school or other large building, go to the lowest level and into a bathroom or a hallway near the center of the building. Stay away from large wide open rooms like an auditorium or gymnasium!

All citizens need to plan ahead is to identify where they will shelter during a tornado watch and warning. The City of Bismarck does not own or operate emergency tornado shelters. Those who live in mobile homes or other vulnerable structures should discuss sheltering possibilities with nearby friends, neighbors, relatives, etc. The best time to relocate to the shelter area is during a tornado watch. Do not purposely wait until a tornado warning is issued. Consider purchasing a NOAA Weather Radio to get your tornado watches and warnings as soon as possible. Even if you should happen to be sleeping, you can get the alert.

Emergency Alert System (EAS): You may be familiar with this system, often activated by the National Weather Service. To receive EAS messages, you must have your radio or television turned ON. So how do you receive the EAS messages while you’re asleep or the television is off? A good option is the NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio.

NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio: After purchasing a NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio, you would be able to receive alerts/warnings issued by the National Weather Service. The all hazards weather radio will “alarm” – similar to an alarm clock – followed by the notification message. The all hazards weather radio is programmable. This allows you to select which county(s) and which alerts you want to receive. For many of us, this may be the best method to receive a tornado warning if we happen to be asleep and not monitoring radio or TV.

Outdoor Warning Sirens: Within the Bismarck area, the outdoor warning sirens are sounded to alert those who are outdoors to get inside and monitor local media for further instruction. Outdoor warning sirens are not likely to be heard indoors or while sleeping.

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