Will County Board urges severe weather preparedness

Emergency Preparedness

JOLIET, Ill. — The Will County Board issued a reminder to residents that severe weather preparedness is March 4-10 across the state.

As spring arrives, diverse weather patterns can often converge, causing a greater likelihood of thunderstorms, flooding and tornadoes.

“Unfortunately, we have already seen the pain and devastation that violent weather can cause following the killer tornadoes that struck Harrisburg, Ill., this week,” Chairman James Moustis said. “We want to remind residents to be alert to changing weather conditions and to have an emergency plan for your home and business.”

The Will County Emergency Management Agency’s website (www.willcountyema.org) provides numerous resources to assist residents, including how to create a disaster plan and guidelines for putting that plan into action. A disaster plan should include such items as water, a three-day supply of non perishable food, prescription medication, baby formula, a flashlight and a wrench or pliers to turn off utilities.

Officials recommend having a designated shelter area in one’s home, usually a basement.

“A big concern is for anyone living in a mobile home,” Minority Leader Walter Adamic (D-Joliet) said. “They need to find a more substantial shelter nearby.”

Residents should stay tuned to radio, TV or their smartphones for the latest on fast-moving weather conditions as well as watches and warnings. A number of free services are available, such as The Weather Channel. Free alerts for your city or zip code can be sent via text message or email. Sign up at www.weather.com.

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency points out the difference between a tornado “watch” and a “warning.” A watch means tornadoes are possible in that particular area. A warning means a tornado has been sighted or detected by radar. A severe weather preparedness guide is available on IEMA’s website.

IEMA notes that while tornadoes have occurred every month of the year, the majority occur between April 1 and June 30 and between the hours of 3 p.m. and 10 p.m. Last year, there were 73 tornadoes reported in Illinois, significantly above the 48 twisters in 2010. The state ranks fifth in the United States when it comes to having the most tornadoes.

More Safety Info:

  1. Severe Weather Preparedness Week in Illinois – WREX
  2. WHAT OTHERS SAY: Prepare and plan for severe weather
  3. Warmest Spring in Years to Fuel Active Severe Weather
  4. More violent weather ahead for damaged communities
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