Severe Weather Awareness Week in Texas
AUSTIN, February 22, 2012 - Straight-line wind storms, thunderstorms and tornadoes can occur at any time of year in Texas. So it pays for individuals and families to plan what to do well in advance. Feb. 19–25 is Severe Weather Awareness Week in Texas. The Texas Department of Public Safety and the National Weather Service remind you that this is a good time to talk to your friends and family about emergency preparedness.
While tornadoes are extremely dangerous, wind, ice and hail storms can do similar damage, so thunderstorms should never be taken for granted. Dangers include:
• Straight-line thunderstorm winds, sometimes referred to as downbursts that blow in excess of 100 mph, are strong enough to uproot trees, destroy crops and cause substantial damage to buildings and roofs. These include severe and rapid downdrafts of air that push damaging winds outward on or near ground level and that are especially
dangerous to aviation.
• Hail falling to earth at speeds nearing 100 mph, damaging trees, crops, automobiles and buildings. Hail storms cause more than $1 billion in damage nationwide each year.
When severe weather threatens, monitor TV and radio broadcasts as well as NOAA weather radio for storm warnings and watches. When straight-line winds threaten, respond the same way you would to the threat of a tornado. Seek shelter in an
interior room on the lowest floor, such as a bathroom, stairwell, hallway or closet. Stay away from windows. If you are outside, cover your head to protect against flying debris. Avoid highway overpasses.