News | March 8, 2022

March 20-26 is Severe Weather Awareness Week

By Jayce Ashwill, DSCC Installation Emergency Manager

The Defense Supply Center Columbus was set to participate in the Ohio statewide Tornado Drill March 23 as part of the state’s Severe Weather Awareness Week but the drill was cancelled due to the forecast of potential severe weather in the area. 

Whether participating in the drill, or not, all personnel should review their tornado shelter locations by reviewing their local Emergency Action Plan. Knowing a “safe place” is the most essential preparedness activity to save a life from severe weather.  No matter where you are, you should know where to go if severe weather approaches.

What can Ohioans do during Severe Weather Awareness Week? Governor DeWine has proclaimed March 20-26 as Severe Weather Awareness Week and is encouraging all Ohioans to prepare themselves for spring and summer weather hazards and home emergencies. Prepare by updating or creating safety plans, practicing tornado drills, and determining where to go and what to do in the event of flooding, thunderstorms, tornadoes or a fire.

Visit the Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness website to view current weather and review severe weather safety and preparedness information.

Important weather-ready tip: Never attempt to cross a flooded road on foot or in a vehicle. Manhole covers or the ground underneath could be washed away. Read more about the “Turn Around Don’t Drown” campaign at the OCSWA website.

Know the 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.

The Franklin County Emergency Management Agency has a state-of-the-art mass notification and warning system designed to warn residents about emergencies. This system is very similar to the DLA AtHoc system. Sign up is quick and easy and you can sign up at https://alertfranklincounty.org/. Most counties in Ohio have a similar system where you can sign up on the county’s emergency management agency website.