Tornado Safety Tips for Memorial Day Weekend

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Last Updated: July 28, 2016 Tornado safety tips for Memorial Day weekend

Below are some safety tips for Memorial Day weekend so ensure you have a worry-free holiday:

  • Listen to local news or a weather radio to stay up to date.
  • Watch for tornado danger signs: a dark, greenish sky; hail or heavy rain; an approaching cloud of debris; loud, continuous roar or rumble, which doesn't fade in a few seconds; and a sudden stillness or quiet in the air.
  • Take immediate action. Don't waste precious seconds opening windows if a tornado is coming your way. The pressure of the storm will do that for you. Take shelter below ground in a basement or storm shelter or above ground in a safe room. If those options are not available, take shelter in an interior room or hallway on the lowest level. In a high-rise building, hunker down in a small interior room or hallway on the lowest floor. Avoid windows, doors and outside walls, as well as corners, as they attract debris. Cover your head to protect it from debris. Do not take shelter in a vehicle or mobile home or under an overpass or a bridge. If you are caught in a car, stay in the car with the seat belt on. Put your head down below the windows; cover your head with your hands and a blanket, coat, or other cushion if possible. If you are outdoors and shelter is unavailable, lie flat in a ditch or other low-lying area.
  • Get more tips from Survive-a-Storm here.

Other tornado safety tips for Memorial Day weekend include:

Weather preparedness

  • Keep up on weather alerts with a battery-operated NOAA weather radio and/or a weather app that provides alerts.
  • Have your emergency kit ready. Get the details from
  • Know where you can find the nearest community storm shelter.

Lightning safety

  • Get indoors. No place outside is safe in a thunderstorm because all thunderstorms are dangerous.
  • If you hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike you.
  • When you hear thunder, immediately move to safe shelter. Get inside a home, building, or hard top automobile (not a convertible). Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you are much safer inside a vehicle than outside.
  • Stay in a safe shelter at least 30 minutes after you hear the last thunderclap.

Outdoor fire safety tips

  • Build fires 25 feet away from structures and keep them attended.
  • Keep children at least three feet away from the fire.
  • Don’t use gasoline as an igniter.
  • Have water or a fire extinguisher nearby.
  • Make sure the fire is completely extinguished when you're done. Don't allow it to burn itself out.
  • Follow local burning restrictions.

Grilling safety tips

  • Only use a grill outdoors and while it is attended.
  • When lighting a grill, keep the top open. If it does not light in the first several attempts, wait five minutes before trying again.
  • Check the grill’s gas tubes and hoses before using a grill that has not been used in a while.
  • When grilling, place the grill away from your home, deck railings and out from under eaves.
  • Keep your grill clean.

Safety on the water

  • Wear a life jacket while boating. The U.S. Coast Guard and/or state laws require you to have an approved PFD (also called life jackets and life vests) when you are in a boat, and that boat must carry one PFD for each passenger on board.
  • Have a signaling device on board. This includes a horn or whistle.
  • Have a fire extinguisher on board.
  • Maintain a fully stocked first aid kit.
  • Have an anchor and an extra tow rope on board in case of emergencies.
  • Bring your cell phone and a VHF radio.

We hope the tornado safety tips were helpful!  Happy Memorial Day from the Survive-a-Storm team! And if you want the best storm shelter made in the U.S. today, check us out on the web at or call 1-888-360-1492.

The leading manufacturer and distributor of prefabricated steel above ground and below ground tornado shelters, and community safe rooms.
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