Archive for Thursday, March 16, 2006

Sunday’s storms reinforce need for preparation

March 16, 2006

As if summoned, a full palette of freaky weather visited the area Sunday at the start of the seven days designated as Severe Weather Awareness Week.

As natives of the Midlands, we know tornadoes can strike anytime of year just as we know they most often occur from April through June. Sunday's storms with tornadoes, hurricane-force straight winds, hail and downpours was a reminder that nothing can be taken for granted for the next few month and that awareness and preparation are vital.

Thankfully, Eudora escaped the worst of the storms that caused much more damage to the west and heartbreak to the east.

There is no predicting what the next few months will bring other than more threatening weather is a surety and some communities, perhaps this community, will experience the worst. Given that knowledge, preparation is simply self-preservation. We all need to have a plan in place that would safeguard us if a tornado were to threaten at home or work.

Sunday also served as a reminder in the outbreak that tornadoes become most dangerous after sundown when it is too dark to see what is happening. Nine died in Missouri as the storms rolled through that state late in afternoon and into the evening.

Those of us who watched Sunday as television stations tracked storms had to be impressed at the level of technology they bring to that task. They have ever-increasing means to dissect storms, pinpointing danger almost to the point of visual sightings. That should save lives but not if we are not mindful enough to watch.

Planning, awareness and taking full advantage of amazing resources can help limit the next storm to regrettable, but replaceable, property damage.

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