FEMA offers toolkit on severe weather preparedness

Washington – With turbulent spring weather already hitting parts of the country, FEMA has released a severe weather preparedness toolkit.

Preparedness materials are available at Ready.gov, which offers recommendations on building emergency kits and implementing a family emergency plan. Additional materials and activities are available through FEMA’s “America’s PrepareAthon!” campaign, which offers nearly a dozen activities for families, organizations and communities to prepare for emergencies. Recommendations include:

  • Register for alerts and warnings.
  • Plan ahead on how to communicate during emergencies.
  • Gather emergency supplies.
  • Conduct drills and practice reactions to possible local hazards.
  • Gather critical documents and keep them in a safe place.
  • Make property improvements to limit hazards during a weather emergency.
  • Communicate with neighbors about emergency plans and share resources.

The spring storm season already has proved deadly. A tornado outbreak April 9 in northern Illinois killed at least two people and damaged several communities.

FEMA says it is important for people to know the differences in severe weather terminology – such as a watch versus a warning. During a watch, forecasters are monitoring a region for a specific threat, such as a thunderstorm or flood. During a warning, specific conditions are taking place that threaten lives and property.