Pat Korte, Coordinator
400 New York Ave
Courthouse - Room 101
Holton, Kansas 66436
As every Kansan knows, tornadoes can be extremely dangerous and destructive. Kansas is in the heart of "tornado alley," where these powerful forces of nature commonly strike, particularly during the peak months of April, May and June.
Preparedness and awareness are necessary to protect yourself and your family in the event that a tornado strikes in your area. You should have an emergency plan in place so that your family knows what to do in case of a tornado. Family tornado drills are a good idea to help ensure that you all know what to do.
Your family disaster supplies kit should be ready so that you will be prepared in the event that you lose water and electricity in your home. You should also know what to do if you encounter a tornado while you are driving a vehicle and cannot reach the shelter of your own home, or if you live in a mobile home or unsafe structure.
IN HOMES OR SMALL BUILDINGS:
IN MOBILE HOMES:
IN SCHOOLS, HOSPITALS, FACTORIES, OR SHOPPING CENTERS:
IN HIGH-RISE BUILDINGS:
IF YOU ARE CAUGHT OUTDOORS:
Flash Flood Safety
While we work and prepare mostly for tornadoes, the combination of flash floods and river floods have accounted for 14 deaths and over $115 million in damage in Kansas over the past decade. These numbers compare very close to the number of tornado related deaths (15) and tornado damage ($208 million) across Kansas during the same time period. During that time, your National Weather Service issued 1,832 warnings for flash flooding alone, alerting the public of the flood threat to life and property. When these warnings are issued for your area, or the moment you realize that a flash flood is imminent, act quickly to save yourself. YOU MAY ONLY HAVE SECONDS!
Here are some Flash Flood Safety rules:
IF CAUGHT OUTDOORS:
IF IN A VEHICLE
Lightning causes around 100 deaths in the U.S. annually.
Lightning safety rules:
IF CAUGHT OUTDOORS:
Winter Storm Safety
Winter storms can range from a moderate snow over a few hours to a blizzard with blinding, winddriven snow that lasts for several days. Some winter storms are large enough to affect several states, while others affect only a single community. Many winter storms are accompanied by dangerously low temperatures and sometimes by strong winds, icing, sleet and freezing rain.
Know the Difference
Winter Storm Outlook
Winter storm conditions are possible in the next 2 to 5 days.
Winter Weather Advisory
Winter weather conditions are expected to cause significant inconveniences and may be hazardous. When caution is used, these situations should not be life threatening.
Winter Storm Watch
Winter storm conditions are possible within the next 36 to 48 hours. People in a watch area should review their winter storm plans and stay informed about weather conditions.
Winter Storm Warning
Life-threatening, severe winter conditions have begun or will begin within 24 hours. People in a warning area should take precautions immediately.
Here are some safety tips for winter storms:
When Caught in a Winter Storm
IN A CAR OR TRUCK:
AT HOME OR IN A BUILDING
Winter Weather Preparation
Everyone is potentially at risk during a winter storm. The actual threat to you depends on your specific situation. About 70% of people who die in ice/snow events lost their life in automobiles. Another 25% were caught out in the storm itself. PREPARATION is the best way to reduce the risk of death or injury in the winter.Here are some ways you should be prepared:
Preparing for Emergencies
The Jackson County Emergency Management Office exists to help citizens and local governments mitigate against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from all types of emergencies and disasters.
Responsibilities include: developing and maintaining the Jackson County Emergency Operations Plan, coordinating responses of public and private assistance during disasters and resource coordination following disasters.
BE READY TO RESPOND TO AN EMERGENCY
Preparedness is the best prevention. Here are some things that you can do in order to be "Ready to Respond" to any emergency.
Practice your Emergency Plan at home and at work.
Put together a disaster kit containing:
Inspect your utilities. Have the proper tools nearby in case you need to shut them off, and reacquaint yourself with the procedures on how to turn utilities off.
Check your fire extinguishers and test your smoke detectors.
Keep your contact information up-to-date and keep copies in your Disaster Kit, purse/wallet, and with a neighbor or relative.
OUTDOOR WARNING SIRENS FOR JACKSON COUNTY
Sirens are designed as a means of warning the population outdoors. They are not designed to be heard inside your home or business. When stormy weather is prevalent you are responsible for your own protection by staying informed either through television, your local radio station or weather alert radio.
All towns in the county have outdoor warning devices and are radio-activated by the Communications Center and Holton Dispatch Center. If a town is without power their sirens will not work. Remember, DO NOT DEPEND ON THE SIRENS, keep a watch on the weather.
SEVERE WEATHER WATCHES AND WARNINGS
A WATCH identifies a relatively large area in which flash floods or severe storm might occur. Watches are quite often issued before any severe weather has developed. Severe Thunderstorm and Tornado watches usually include an area of 140 miles wide by 200 miles long.
A WARNING is issued when severe weather has already developed and has been reported by storm spotters or indicated by radar. Warnings are statements of imminent danger and are issued for relatively small areas near the severe storm or flood.
© 2017 Jackson County, Kansas