GCPH offers severe weather planning tips

XENIA — Greene County Public Health and other local safety agencies are encouraging people in Greene County to review their emergency plans and prepare for the potential for severe weather this spring.

In a coordinated effort with the Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness (OCSWA), Governor Kasich has proclaimed this week, March 18-24, as Severe Weather Awareness Week and encourages all Ohioans to learn what to do to protect themselves from spring and summer weather hazards and home emergencies.

As part of Severe Weather Awareness Week, Ohio will participate in a statewide tornado drill and test its Emergency Alert System 9:50 a.m. Wednesday, March 21. Counties will test their outdoor warning sirens, and schools, households and businesses are encouraged to practice their tornado drills and safety plans.

The best time to prepare for a potential emergency is right now, according to GCPH officials, who encourage residents to make plans for severe weather by knowing the warning signs, drafting a family or business communication plan, and gathering emergency supplies at home and in the car.

Greene County Public Health and the Greene County office of Emergency Management encourage all families to consider the following additional tips:

– Designate a safe location at home to seek shelter.

– Know the difference between a weather watch, which means severe weather is possible, and a warning, which means a local event is likely or imminent.

– Install a weather radio in the home. Outdoor warning sirens are meant to be heard outside, not indoors.

– Don’t walk or drive in flood waters. A small amount of water can knock a person over or take away control of a vehicle.

Residents can learn more about preparing for potential emergencies at www.weathersafety.ohio.gov and www.ready.gov, or call Greene County Public Health at 937-374-5600 and ask for Kim.