Saturday, November 15, 2008

Tornado Warning

Al was in Tampa last night doing his Pest Control business, so I was home alone. It had been raining off and on all day while I was at work and I thought the worst was over. Suddenly the weather radio alerted me that we were in a tornado watch and then we went into a warning. We just bought this weather radio after having several from Radio Shack that wouldn't work more than a few weeks. After 5-6 radios failing we returned the last one, got our money back and bought one from Oregon Scientific It is model #WR601. It has worked like a charm and even worked in the shelter. It alerts you when severe weather is approaching and you can always listen to NOAA weather reports. Sometimes during storms you have no electric for TV or internet. Our local TV stations are very BAD about keeping us informed on severe weather. They are great as long as the weather comes during their normal hours. However, if it storms after the 6pm news or before the 11 pm news, you are on your own. If if happens in the middle of the night..forget it! It wasn't like that in Tampa. This weather radio is a must have. Our local Emergency management does make phone calls to alert you of tornados but the weather radio is the best bet. Ours was around $50.

I am very nervous about tornadoes and we purchased a storm shelter last year. We bought it from Storm Shelters of Northwest Florida which is our of Chipley, Florida. It is a pain to have to get into it as I was comfy, and didn't want to go out into the rain. After reviewing the path of the severe weather I took my cat squeaky and we went into the shelter. There seems to be a red ant colony right around the entrance...will have to get Al to work on that. We had not ever had to use it before so this was the first. I discovered the cell phone worked and that the weather radio even worked provided I put it in the right location on the stairs. That was comfortating. We will have to keep a few more things there, like something to read as it gets boring and a porta potti! I stayed down there about 45 minutes. There were some freaky noises which I believe were coming from the air vents. It sounded creepy when the lightning hit but we didn't seem to have much wind. Here are a couple of photographs of the shelter before and after installation. It is larger than it looks. We can actually stand up inside.

The shelter was expensive and we had a hard time justifying the cost but tornadoes seem to be more frequent here in south Georgia than they were in Florida. Last year, especially in the spring every front that would move through brought tornado warnings. We actually had one touch down a few miles from our home. We decided it was worth the peace of mind to have it, and last night I was glad I did. This morning the news reports say there were tornadoes in North Carolina with 2 fatalities so far. Glad to have our "Hidey-Hole"