Severe Weather Awareness Week offers opportunity to plan

2020 Severe Weather Awareness Week is April 13-17.

Photo Illustration by Metro Newspaper Service

Each year, local and state emergency management and homeland security offices in collaboration with the National Weather Service and 16 state and local agencies and organizations sponsor Severe Weather Awareness Week in Minnesota.

The week is designed to refresh, remind and educate everyone about the seasonal threats from severe weather and how to prepare to deal with them, make and practice an emergency plan, and build or refresh an emergency preparedness kit.

Each day of the week focuses on a different weather safety topic:

  • Monday: Alerts and warnings,

  • Tuesday: Severe weather, lighting and hail,

  • Wednesday: Floods,

  • Thursday: Tornadoes (with statewide tornado drills — but with no siren activation),

  • Friday: Extreme heat.

“Due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has severely affected our area and nation, Cass County will be limiting participation” in this year’s Severe Weather Awareness Week events to focus on the COVID-19 issue, Cass County Sheriff Tom Burch stated in a news release. Following statewide recommendations, county tornado sirens will not sound Thursday, April 16. This will reduce emergency messaging and potential mixed communications being conveyed to the public during this substantial time of crisis Burch stated.
“Your family and employer are still encouraged to be aware of severe weather hazards during this summer season and to ensure plans are in place for sheltering and having an emergency kit,” Burch said. “Now is a good time to utilize some of these resources during children’s distance learning times to talk about Severe Weather and what to do in the event of tornado siren activation.”

For additional information, visit the state of Minnesota’s Main Weather Safety Page or Severe Weather Awareness Week Page: .

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