Preparing for severe weather

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — As we head into the summer months, it’s always good to be prepared for whatever Mother Nature throws our way.

Tropical Storm Cristobal made landfall and didn’t greatly affect Northwest Arkansas. However, as we continue into the summer months and the risk for severe thunderstorms increase, families should be alert and aware of what’s going on.

Emergency management director for Washington County, John Luther, said during a thunderstorm:

  • Have multiple ways of getting weather alerts as a way to track the risks
  • Get indoors as soon as possible because lightning could be a part of the storm
  • Beware of flash flooding. This is especially dangerous when drivers try to drive through it

“They put themselves and their passengers, oftentimes children, in harm’s way,” Luther said. “Then our rescuers have to go and assist them to get out of that situation and that puts the responders in harm’s way as well.”

During a tornado, Luther said it’s best to go back to basics:

  • Get to a lower level like a basement or a storm center
  • If that’s not possible, get into an internal room of your house. Ideally a smaller room.
  • Avoid rooms with glass

Luther also stresses the importance of being prepared well before a situation hits so you’re not caught off guard. 

“Having a plan in place for your family is critical so that you and your family know exactly what to do and where to go,” Luther said. “It’s not something you’re trying to decide in the heat of the moment.”

Another way you can be prepared is by having an emergency go bag always ready. It should have things like extra clothes, batteries, a flashlight, and matches.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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