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Monday, May 23, 2011

Why I Prefer Hurricanes to Tornadoes

We feel such sadness looking at the videos of the tornado in Joplin, Missouri that killed at least 89 people yesterday.

Those people may have heard the warnings to expect severe thunderstorms, but I imagine they did the same thing I always do---They probably just hoped for the best.

My normal reactions to a severe weather warning are as follows:

First, I cancel any plans to drive anywhere. (Who wants to drive in heavy rain or hail?)

Second, I unplug the computers and TVs and other electronic devices so they won't get hit by a power surge from a lightning strike.

And then, I generally just keep doing the same things I always do inside my house, and hope that the severe weather passes by without incident.

In certain night time situations, I will make everyone sleep on the ground floor of our house instead of upstairs in the bedrooms.  But usually I like my bed too much to go to that much trouble.

Thankfully, a tornado has never hit my house.  But if it did, it would come as a surprise, as it did to those 89 unfortunate souls.  There is just no way to ever know precisely that your house will be a target for any particular tornado.


The reason I prefer hurricanes is that you KNOW they are coming.  When a hurricane is approaching your area, you have a couple of days of really serious preparation time.  You shouldn't talk yourself out of it, or just HOPE that it will miss you.  Hurricanes are over a hundred miles wide, and if it is coming in your direction you better assume trouble is on its way and make some plans.

We haven't had a direct hit here in the Raleigh area since Hurricane Fran on Sept. 5-6, 1996, so we are overdue for another one.

Governor Purdue has issued a statement concerning the upcoming hurricane season:

North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue says residents should take this week to get prepared for hurricane season that starts next month.
Perdue has proclaimed May 22-28 as Hurricane Preparedness Week.
Residents are urged to create family emergency plans and prepare supply kits. Hurricane season begins June 1 and runs through November. Perdue says the deadly tornadoes that passed through the South in April should be reminders of the need to be prepared.
Residents also are encouraged to review and update homeowners' insurance policies now to make sure they include coverage for accidental damage and natural disasters. They also should make sure they are insured for flood damage.
Emergency supply kits should include enough nonperishable food and a gallon of water per person per day to last three to seven days.

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