TEMA kicks off Severe Weather Awareness Week in Tennessee

Did you know there have been 13 tornadoes in Moore County since 1950? This week, the National Weather Service will host two free classes about Tennessee tornadoes during Severe Weather Week. Click here for details. (Graphic Provided)

Most folks in Lynchburg – at least those who use the Metro Moore County Public Safety app – woke up Monday morning to a Flood Watch for our area from Monday morning until Wednesday at noon as weather professionals predict excessive rainfall for northern Alabama and southern, middle Tennessee. It’s a common occurrence during the Tennessee spring season when temperature and weather events can be a bit unpredictable

That’s why, every February, the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) and the National Weather Service (NWS) partner for Tennessee’s Severe Weather Awareness Week on Feb. 20-26.

“TEMA wants to help Tennesseans prepare for severe weather hazards,” said TEMA Director Patrick Sheehan. “Severe weather and flooding can occur any time in Tennessee, even though they are most common during the spring months of March, April, and May. Tennesseans should take this time to familiarize themselves with their emergency plan and know what to do during severe weather events.”

The National Weather Service is planning a series of virtual training courses throughout the week. A list of courses and daily educational themes can be found by clicking here. Topics include the importance of spotters, flooding & flash floods, lightning, the underrated killer, tornado safety, severe thunderstorms, NOAA weather radios and the the emergency alert system, as well as the importance of social media. There are also several classes being hosted as part of sever weather week including one on the August 2021 Waverly Flood. Click here for a complete list of free classes.

On Wednesday, at around 9:30 a.m. there will be a statewide tornado drill and a statewide test of all NOAA weather radios. Locals should not be alarmed as it’s only a test.

This year’s annual Severe Weather Awareness Week comes after a year of devastating floods, tornadoes, and severe weather.

Some basic severe weather advice includes: never venture into high water, either on foot or in a vehicle, if you’re outside and hear thunder, go indoors immediately, go to a basement or an innermost, first floor room in your home if you’re told to take shelter during a tornado warning, know the location of and route to your office or building’s tornado shelter, never try to outrun a tornado, have an emergency plan ready at places where your family spends time – work, school, daycare, commuting and outdoor events, and emergency plans should include where to meet, and who family members should check in with, if you are separated from family members during a severe weather emergency.

At a minimum, emergency preparedness kits should include one gallon of water per-day, per-person, and per-pet, for three to five days. The kit should also have enough non-perishable food for each family member, and pets, for three to five days, according to state officials.

Other items that every kit should include:  flashlight, battery-powered radio, extra batteries, first aid kit, personal hygiene items, cell phone charger or solar charger, copies of important family documents, and extra supplies of medications, especially for those with chronic health conditions. •

{The Lynchburg Times is the only locally owned newspaper in Lynchburg and also the only woman-owned newspaper in Tennessee. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}