Tips to keep you safe during severe weather in March

Wednesday, March 2, 2016
Severe weather preparation
Severe weather preparation

As we head into the month of March, it's time to start thinking about how to prepare for strong storms. March is Severe Weather Awareness Month for the American Red Cross.


Central North Carolina has already seen it's fair share of severe weather and tornadoes this year and more could be on the way in the months ahead. March is the third highest month for tornadoes in North Carolina and between 1950-2014 North Carolina experienced 141 twisters.

So what can you do to keep your family safe?

First - Have a plan.

Know where to go. During floods, you need to get to the highest floor of your home or apartment. During tornadoes, you'll want to do the exact opposite. Go to the lowest floor of your home and seek shelter in an interior room with no windows or doors.

If you live in a mobile home, it is imperative that you leave. Mobile homes are never safe during tornadoes.

Second - Make a kit.

After a storm hits, it can be days before emergency responders are able to get to you, especially if there is widespread damage in a community. Having a kit with survival items can be the difference between life and death.

We recommend making a kit and leaving it in your "safe place," that way you will be prepared once a storm hits, giving you peace of mind.

What to include in your kit:

  • One gallon of water, per person, per day (enough for 3 days)
  • Non-perishable food items like bars, fruit and vegetable packets and canned goods (enough for 3 days)
  • Flashlights with spare batteries
  • A bag of personal documents (copies of birth certificates, passports, home owners deeds, insurance policies, lists of medications)
  • Cash
  • Pet supplies
  • Baby supplies
  • A first aid kit
  • Cell phone chargers

If you have already assembled a kit, it's important to double check it as well as checking extra batteries to make sure everything is still usable.

Last - Stay informed

It's important to have a NOAA Weather Radio that is battery powered and the ABC11 weather app to make sure you are up to speed on severe weather in your area. It's equally important that you know when it's time to come out of your safe zone.

In a situation where you or a family member is injured during a storm, the American Red Cross First Aid app can walk you through what to do. It's free on the app store, and can save lives.

3 apps you should download to be prepared for severe weather