How Situationally Aware Are You When it Comes to Severe Weather?

June 08, 2017 by Daphne Thompson
Topics:   WeatherOps | Lightning | Tornado | Wind | Thunderstorm |

By now, we have all seen the photo of the man mowing the lawn with a tornado behind him. Just take a quick look at the news every week and you will come across many other stories of people who did not seem situationally aware of the severe weather that was happening around them. 

This tornado occurred in Canada in the past week. The man in the photo claims he was "keeping an eye" on the twister that appears to be quite close! Did he really need to be mowing the lawn while a tornadic storm raged nearby? Luckily, the person taking the photo was paying attention. However, in cases like this it is better to be taking shelter. If this storm had been moving towards them, the tornado could have quickly overtaken them, especially if it had increased in size. There have been multiple fatalities in similar situations where even those very familiar with supercells and tornadoes were unable to quickly get out of the path.

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Do your kids play in bounce houses? Before you let your little one in, do you make sure it is secured properly or do you know if the event has someone in charge of making sure those in attendance are safe? Ever few months, a new story appears telling a similar story to what happens in this video. With strong winds, bounce houses not properly tied down will fly. Small children are injured yearly when this happens. If you plan to have one of these, or multiple ones of these, at a party, you need to make sure they are safely secured. If it turns out to be a windy or story day, a better plan would be to have alternate activities than end up with with a situation like shown here.

There have been multiple flash flood events across the country this month. In every one of those occasions, you will find images of cars that are driving through high, moving water or floating. Why do people do this? Are they unaware that moving water can wash cars away? Are they unsure how deep the water is and figure they can make it through? Or are they just not paying that much attention to the flooding roads? Many times in hail storms, cars will stop under overpasses and block all traffic so that they don't get damaged. While this is wrong, it is much more damaging if you choose to drive your car into water that could either flood the vehicle or cause your death by being washed away.

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In the following video, a man was standing outside his vehicle storm spotting when he was struck by lightning. The bolt traveled through him and exited his feet. He was left with severe burns, blown eardrums, and temporary paralysis. It is never a good idea to be outside when there is lightning. Even if you don't take a direct strike, the electricity can travel through wet ground and shock bystanders. If you are hearing thunder, move inside a building or get inside a vehicle.

It is always important to be situationally aware of your surroundings and definitely of severe weather. We offer many ways to do this using our mobile weather apps or our forecast services.

Weather Radio -Gain life-saving information in the form of alerts, audio, real-time streaming video, interactive mapping and more. 

RadarScope -Professional grade weather radar that goes with you anywhere.

WeatherOps -Precision weather decision support helps you manage people and assets in relation to weather impacts.

We promise to meet your weather needs anytime, anywhere on the globe with better accuracy than any other source. How can we help you be better prepared? 

 

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Daphne Thompson

Daphne is the Content Marketing Manager. Her prior experience includes working at the National Weather Center, Norman Emergency Management, and National Weather Service. With a degree in Meteorology from OU and previous outreach experience, she is able to bridge the gap between science and the general public.