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This Wednesday, January 16, at 10:00 a.m. Pinellas County will join the state in the annual Great Tornado Drill. This is only a drill.
This is a great drill for schools, businesses, households, community centers and other locations where organizations meet. Once the group is in the safe room, participants can take a selfie and post it on Social Media (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) using the hashtag #PCtornadodrill. The best photo entries will win a NOAA Weather Radio, which issues emergency weather warnings.
Instructions for the drill Before the drill • Prepare• Inform staff/students• Review and refine a tornado plan http://www.spc.noaa.gov/faq/tornado/safety.html Jan. 16: The day of the drill After 8 a.m. Consider a Tornado Watch to be in effect. A watch means conditions are favorable for the development of tornadoes and weather should be closely monitored.• Announce the “test of the Tornado Watch” to staff and/or students• Designate someone to coordinate emergency procedures• Evacuate tornado-vulnerable areas At 10 a.m. Consider a Tornado Warning to be in effect. A warning means that a tornado is very possible or one has been spotted.• “Receive” the emergency message (Simulate this yourself. You will only receive a test alert if you are signed up for Alert Pinellas. You can sign up at www.pinellascounty.org/alertpinellas).• Drill coordinator determines this is an immediate threat and gives a “take shelter” or “duck and cover” command (depending on space available at location). Remember to reiterate that this is only a drill.Take a selfie and post it using the hashtag #PCTornadoDrill.
10:30 a.m. Termination of Watch and Warning • Give instructions to return to normal activities (You will not receive notification. Terminate the drill as you see fit.) After the Drill Wrap-up • Following the drill, assess and revise the plan as needed. For more information on emergency preparedness, go to http://www.pinellascounty.org/emergency/tornado.htm