WACO, Texas – As COVID-19 spreads, people are encouraged to isolate themselves and not congregate in large groups – but with Severe Weather Season here, what does this mean for community storm shelters?
April statistically sees the highest number of tornadoes during the year. This means you need to have your severe weather plan ready to go, but you may need to tweak the plan a little to allow for social distancing.
“If your life was under an immediate threat, like from a tornado or something like that, you would definitely want to get to a storm shelter. If that means you have four or five people, you have to take your chance with that. Hopefully you wouldn’t be in there for very long, but that would be the safest thing to do,” says Jason Dunn, a Meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
What do you do if your usual storm shelter is closed due to COVID-19?
“If it’s closed, you have to find a secondary means of sheltering. So find another shelter or a neighbor who has a safer place. Especially those who live in mobile homes,” says Dunn.
These plans need to be worked out sooner rather then later.
“These plans need to be thought of beforehand. We’ve got a threat of severe weather today, so you’ve got to figure that information out ahead of time so you know exactly what to do if you’re threatened,” says Dunn.
Remember, you want to be on the lowest floor of a well-built home or building with as many walls between you and the outside as possible during a tornado warning.