The leading provider of safety and health training products for the K-12 market.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Tornado watch

Tornados, violent windstorms spawned by thunderstorms or hurricanes, occur in the U.S. more than anywhere else, with 1,947 reported in 2004, the most ever! Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska are Tornado Alley, where most of the storms occur from April to June.

Tornado safety in schools starts with a tornado safety plan tailored to the building’s design and the ability to move students to safety quickly.
Moving students to the lowest possible level is safest, but in large schools there may not be time to direct all occupants of upper floors to lower areas. School administrators should evaluate the time, space and coordination needed to direct all students and staff into safe areas in an organized manner.

Seconds count! When tornados are spotted close by, there many be only one to two minutes of lead time so you must determine the safest place students can go. Enclosed places, with as many walls as possible between students and the tornado, will guard them from flying debris, the biggest tornado hazard.

Carefully developed safety drills should be run several times a year to prepare students and staff for tornados. Maps and signs with arrows should be posted in hallways directing people to safe areas.