Friday, April 13, 2012

Storm Prep

Hannah and Leah playing in the rain today after school
(yes there is a large hole in our backyard.  a tree died and we have yet to replace it. just fyi.)

Living in Tornado Alley all of my life, I have learned what to do when severe weather hits.  It has been ingrained deep into my psyche.  Go to the downstairs most central location in your home away from any windows.  For most people that would be a closet or bathroom.  The best thing to do is get into a storm shelter or basement, but not everyone has one. At this time I will answer a common question I get asked. "Why do people in Oklahoma not have basements?"  I will tell you.  It's because of the soil which is really more like clay instead of dirt.  For whatever reason (I'm no engineer) it is not conducive for basements.  Anyway, we have our storm safety plan firmly in place.  If a tornado is en route to our area, we get in the kids' bathroom (no exterior walls and no windows).  I put the kids' bicycle helmets on their heads for extra protection, put them in the bathtub and cover them with pillows. Mike and I sit on the floor next to the tub covered in pillows as well, and the cats come in too, but just wander around meowing and looking nervous.  A weather radio is handy as well as flashlights in the event of a power outage.

So why am I telling you all of this?  Well, Oklahoma is under a severe weather watch all weekend.  The sky is dark and the clouds are churning.  Large hail is predicted and yes, even tornado outbreaks.  Local events are being canceled due to potential bad weather, and everyone is on high alert.  The city is even discontinuing their weekly tornado siren test at noon tomorrow so that there is no confusion.  If we hear the sirens tomorrow, it's the real deal.  Most people, in spite of all the precautions I mentioned earlier, go outside and watch storms roll in.  If you've lived here for any length of time, you know what to look for when things get serious.  Either that or you will hear our weathermen's voices reaching a fever pitch on TV.  One of our local meteorologists always wears this hideous sparkly red tie on bad weather days.  It is like the poor tie got in a fight with a bedazzler, and the tie lost.  But you know when he breaks out that tie, bad weather is imminent.

I guess this weekend could prove to be quite exciting! Stay tuned!


Maria Rose said...

Stay safe!

Joe and Talsie said...

I have a love/hate relationship with storms. I love the clouds and the awesomeness (is that a word?) of torrents of rain. However, I truly fear having my house (which was the replacement to a house taken out by a tornado in 2001) being hit while I am in it. We have an actual storm shelter in our garage at least! I think they are worth the extra cost. Our neighbor had theirs built into their master closet. Stay safe today!

PS Water tables. Clay does not drain and basements in OK flood extremely easily. That is a large reason we don't have basements.
PPS I fear a house would collapse on top of the basement.