For Nebraska, winter was a bit meteorologically confusing, bringing us a mix of some severe weather and some surprises. We had bitterly cold days, strong wind storms, some unseasonably warm weather and even a few December tornadoes.
The arrival of spring means we can expect periods of thunderstorms, forceful winds, hail and tornadoes. We might also see flooding or flash flooding and, sometimes as late as May, we could see snow.
This week is Severe Weather Awareness Week in Nebraska, which serves to remind us that severe weather can strike quickly. It’s a good time to make sure you are prepared so that you and your family can stay safe.
A watch means you should be prepared because severe weather is possible. Check for forecast updates, monitor sky conditions and know where to take shelter, if needed.
A warning means you should take action because severe weather is imminent. Take shelter immediately, seek further information and check for forecast updates from local media and the weather service.
What is a “severe” thunderstorm? The National Weather Service applies specific criteria to storms of this level.
A thunderstorm is severe when it produces:
Thunderstorms can result in damage caused by wind, hail, lightning, flooding and flash flooding, and tornadoes.
The following tips will help you be ready to react if a tornado occurs:
The National Weather Service held its statewide tornado drill Wednesday, and it has some additional guidance on staying safe during tornado season here.
Each household is encouraged to come up with a weather plan and designate a safe room or area in the home should the need to take shelter arise.
Be sure to have an emergency kit packed and stored so that if an emergency arises, you won’t have to waste time scrambling to collect essentials. Prepare an emergency kit to have on hand should severe weather strike.
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