What to do during a tornado
If you are in a house
- Go to the basement or take shelter in a small interior ground floor room such as a bathroom, closet or hallway.
- If you have no basement, protect yourself by taking shelter under a heavy table or desk.
- In all cases, stay away from windows, outside walls and doors.
If you live on a farm
- Livestock hear and sense impending tornadoes. If your family or home is at risk, the livestock will be a non-issue.
- If your personal safety is not an issue, you may only have time to open routes of escape for your livestock.
- Open the gate, if you must, and then exit the area in a tangent direction away from the expected path of the twister.
If you are in an office or apartment building
- Take shelter in an inner hallway or room, ideally in the basement or on the ground floor.
- Do not use the elevator.
- Stay away from windows.
If you are in a gymnasium, church or auditorium
- Large buildings with wide-span roofs may collapse if a tornado hits.
- If possible, find shelter in another building.
- If you are in one of these buildings and cannot leave, take cover under a sturdy structure such as a table or desk.
Avoid cars and mobile homes
- More than half of all deaths from tornadoes happen in mobile homes.
- Find shelter elsewhere, preferably in a building with a strong foundation.
- If no shelter is available, lie down in a ditch away from the car or mobile home.
- Beware of flooding from downpours and be prepared to move.
If you are driving
- If you spot a tornado in the distance go to the nearest solid shelter.
- If the tornado is close, get out of your car and take cover in a low-lying area, such as a ditch.
In all cases
- Get as close to the ground as possible, protect your head and watch for flying debris.
- Do not chase tornadoes – they are unpredictable and can change course abruptly.
- A tornado is deceptive. It may appear to be standing still but is, in fact, moving toward you.