State-wide Tornado Drill (March 5)

By , February 26, 2013 8:04 am

The Missouri tornado season is close at hand.  All UMKC faculty, staff and students are encouraged to participate in the annual statewide tornado drill.  It will be initiated at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 5 by the sounding of the local Kansas City weather sirens, notifications on the NOAA All-Hazards Weather Radios, and a UMKC Alert! Emergency Mass Notification System message.  Participation is not mandatory but highly recommended.   Safe refuge sheltering areas have been designated in each University structure with maps posted in the main hallways.  For more information on seeking shelter, emergency operations, and severe weather safety, visit the UMKC Alert Webpage  and the Missouri Storm Awareness Website


Why Participate?

Severe weather can strike at any time without warning throughout the state of Missouri during tornado season.  Knowing where to go for shelter during such an event can be the difference between life and death. The Statewide Tornado Drill is an excellent opportunity for us to review sheltering plans and confirm readiness. If you are able to join us, consider spending a few minutes at 1:30pm on March 5th and participate by walking to the closest shelter area or using an emergency Evacuation/Sheltering map to review your route to that sheltering area.  By reasoning through the necessary response steps during this emergency exercise UMKC will be better prepared in the event of an actual emergency.

Tornado Safety Tips:

THERE ARE SEVERAL FORMS OF SEVERE WEATHER NOTIFICATIONS: Do not depend solely on one method of notification. Commercial media and internet services provide information when you are awake, but do little when you are asleep. Outdoor warning sirens were designed to warn people outdoors and were not intended to be heard indoors. NOAA All-Hazard Weather Radios provide 24 hour a day notification of severe weather at home and at work. All-Hazard radios are programmable to the county that you live in, to alert you day or night when severe weather is in your area. Many of these devices have back-up battery power and will function during power outages.

IN SCHOOLS, HOSPITALS, OR SHOPPING CENTERS: Go to interior rooms and halls on the lowest floor. Stay away from glass enclosed places or areas with wide-span roofs such as auditoriums and warehouses. Crouch down and cover your head. Don’t take shelter in halls that open to the south or the west. Centrally-located stairwells are good shelter.

DURING A TORNADO: Absolutely avoid buildings with large free-span roofs.  Remember, seek shelter on the lowest level, go to the smallest room, and center part of the building.

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