Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tornadoes, Climate Change and Being Prepared

I was trying to write a post last night for today but ended up watching weather instead as my county was under a tornado watch. I also happened to be writing about climate change and extreme weather for my blog, talk about ironic.

While tornadoes where I live aren't a new thing, I live in Oklahoma, they seem to be getting more common and at least this year, our season started early. Normally tornado season in Oklahoma starts in May but we have already had a lot of tornadoes this year, including one that killed five people in Woodward, Oklahoma on April 14th. And last night a tornado hit some small towns near Medford, Oklahoma, thankfully no injuries have been reported with that tornado. 

Last year was a very scary year for me, for tornadoes. On Earth Day a tornado was headed straight for my town. Our sirens were going off and we were being told to take cover. I have a scanner and I was listening to the storm spotters to know when my area was in danger so I could get in the closet, thankfully right before it hit town it disappeared. It would have likely hit very close to me with the path it was on. Between that storm and the sirens going off a few other times this past year, we have been seriously looking into buying an in ground shelter.

So, what does all this have to do with climate change? Well like I talked about on my blog today, while no one weather event can be linked to climate change, the growing trend of more extreme weather is consistent with the expectations of climate scientists. 

With this being the case it's more important than ever to be prepared for disasters. Last year my area experienced all kinds of extreme weather, from a major snow storm, to a 5.6 earthquake, lots of tornadoes, flooding, a major drought and wildfires. It got me thinking more about being prepared for these kinds of things. 

So this leaves me with some questions for everyone, first are you prepared for a disaster? If so for how many days? Do you store canned food or have you found good options that are bpa-free? How do you store water? 

Photo credit: NOAA Photo Library

2 comments:

Dusti Sage said...

I am in no way prepared! We just moved into a home with no basement, a first for me and it terrifies me. There is a very small crawl space under the house, and I'd have to go outside and uncover a hole in the ground, jump down about 5 feet and then somehow cover it back up with the boards and insulation that go over top of the hole. All with a 1 and 2 year old?? Yikes. I'd love some advice too.

Helena said...

We're sort of prepared--that is, we have food and stores around, and hurricane shutters at the ready, but I haven't thought much about it since the end of last hurricane season and I really need to do so as June 1 is coming up quick (and really I should maintain readiness year-round, hurricanes obviously aren't the only disaster possible, just the one we tend to think of first down here in FL).

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