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The National Weather Service is celebrating Severe Weather Awareness Week for Southeast Texas from today, March 8 through Friday, March 12. Each day is focused on a specific safety category to educate the community on protecting life and property.
MCTX officials are encouraging residents and businesses to use this week to review your safety plans and prepare for the upcoming season. Top severe weather events for the region that’s selected for this awareness week includes:
Heat is the leading cause of weather-related deaths in most years. As the region is warming up, remember to stay hydrated; take proper precautions like wearing sun screen, sun glasses and light clothing; never leave people or pets in a closed car; avoid strenuous activities and check on family members and neighbors during extreme heat.
Severe thunderstorms are officially defined as storms that are capable of producing hail that is an inch or larger or wind gusts over 58 mph. Hail this size can damage property such as plants, roofs and vehicles. Wind this strong is able to break off large branches, knock over trees or cause structural damage to trees. Check for watches or warnings for your area and go to a secure location and use caution if driving.
Of all the many dangerous weather hazards, tornadoes are one of the most powerful and destructive. If there are tornado warnings issued for your area, shelter immediately, and move to an interior room or bathroom or closet on the lowest floor of a sturdy building. Avoid windows and cover your head to protect yourself from flying debris.
Flooding is yet another major weather hazard in our region as quick rain and flash flooding is common. During a flood, water levels and the rate at which the water is flowing can quickly change. Get to higher ground; do not cross barricaded streets; and remember to always, “Turn Around, Don’t Drive” if there is water on roads. It only takes six inches of water to knock you off your feet.
When you plan for a beach trip, remember to check the surf zone forecast, take proper heat safety precautions like wearing sun screen, know how to escape a rip current, know where the life ring or the floating devices are located and talk to a life guard/beach patrol if possible. The United States Lifesaving Association (USLA) recommends, to swim with one or more buddies when possible and have at least one person on shore with a cell phone to watch the group and call for help if needed.
For more details, visit www.weather.gov/safety.
In addition to the safety tips, it is important to understand some of the key weather terminologies used in emergency alerts like three listed below:
ADVISORY: An Advisory includes details on upcoming potential weather events that could escalate.
WATCH: A Watch means weather event is possible; Be Prepared.
WARNING: A Warning means weather event is happening; Take Action.
While it is necessary to be aware of preparation tips and alert terminologies, it is also equally important to learn where to find accurate information during an emergency. Missouri City has several communication tools that residents, businesses and stakeholders can get vital information at all times, including some dedicated outlets for emergency incidents.
Follow us on the official City communication outlets below to stay connected:
For more information about Missouri City, please watch the City website: www.missouricitytx.gov, like us on Facebook—fb/MissouriCityTX, follow us on Twitter and Instagram—@MissouriCityTX, and watch Missouri City Television (Ch. 16 on Comcast and Ch. 99 on AT&T U-verse).