COLUMBUS, Ohio — Tornado sirens across the state were activated Wednesday morning as part of a yearly drill.
The drill coincides with Ohio's Spring Severe Weather Awareness Week (March 19-25).
Local communities across the state participated in the tornado drill at 9:50 a.m. to test their emergency and sheltering plans.
The sirens in Franklin County lasted for about three minutes.
Businesses, schools and households were encouraged to practice their tornado drills and emergency plans.
“Severe weather can impact Ohio at any time of year, so it’s important that residents are prepared for the possibility of a weather emergency,” said Gov. Mike DeWine. “Spring Severe Weather Awareness Week allows Ohioans the opportunity to learn more about severe weather and be prepared before, during, and after a storm.”
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Difference between Storm Watches and Warnings
A Tornado WATCH means conditions are favorable for the development of tornadoes in and near areas designated by the National Weather Service. Be ready to move to a place of safety if the watch is upgraded to a warning or if threatening weather approaches.
A Tornado WARNING means a tornado is imminent or has been sighted. Warnings indicate impending danger to life and property. Seek safe shelter immediately.
There are several ways to prepare for severe weather events. For starters, children are taught in school to DUCK:
- D - go down to the lowest level, stay away from windows.
- U - go under something such as a basement staircase or a heavy table or desk.
- C - cover your head.
- K - keep in shelter until the storm has passed.
Then there are ways to protect your home that can be done in minutes and at minimal or no cost to you. (Source: Disastersafety.org)
- Close your garage door and all interior doors to give your roof a fighting chance in high winds.
- Make sure to tidy up outdoors and organize your garage. Items on the lawn or patio could become flying debris and damage your home
- Locate and prepare a safe space: an interior room with no windows on the lowest floor of your home, such as a basement or closet
- Set up multiple ways to get weather alerts