Severe Weather Information

From as early as March to as late as November: Severe Weather has occurred in Nevada, Iowa.

We want to alert you of severe weather and to educate your family on where to go and what to do in the event of inclement weather. In the event of severe weather conditions, you should monitor weather through your local news station or the National Weather Service.

No matter what you are doing, any time you hear an outdoor warning siren go off, you should immediately seek shelter and take cover. If possible turn on a radio or TV to a local station for more information and possible emergency instructions. You can sign up for weather alerts through many television and weather stations. Remember, outdoor warning sirens are just that, outdoor warning. The sirens are meant to be heard outside to signal you to go indoors and seek shelter and are not meant to be heard inside your home or place of business.

Along with the TV and radio, NOAA Weather Radios are a safe way to receive watches and warnings when in your home or place of business. A NOAA Weather Radio is very useful to receive watches and warnings when you are asleep at night. NOAA Weather Radios can be purchased at most retail stores and can be easily programmed for your area.

Watches and warnings

When do outdoor warning sirens activate?

The outdoor warning sirens are activated whenever a tornado has been spotted by storm spotters or identified on radar by the National Weather Service. The sirens are also activated when sustained 70 mph winds and/or hail greater or 1.75” (golf ball) are likely.
 
Note: People should seek shelter immediately when the outdoor storm warning sirens are activated. It is possible for sunny calm weather to turn dangerous very quickly. On August 10, 2020, the Derecho proved just because it is sunny outside, a fast moving storm can do considerable damage.  
 
The outdoor warning sirens are tested on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month around 12 noon.

Thunderstorms

Severe Thunderstorm Watch is issued by the National Weather Service when conditions are favorable for the development of severe thunderstorms. A severe thunderstorm is defined as a storm producing 1” or larger hail and winds of 58mph or greater. They are issued for a 4-8 hour time period and are usually well in advance of the storm.

 

Severe Thunderstorm Warning is issued by the National Weather Service when a severe thunderstorm is indicated by radar or a spotter reports a thunderstorm producing 1” or larger hail and wind 58mph or greater. People in the warned area should see shelter immediately. Severe thunderstorms can produce tornados with little or no advanced warning. Severe thunderstorm warnings are usually issued for a duration of one hour. They can be issued without a Severe Thunderstorm Watch already being in effect.

Tornados

Tornado Watch is issued by the National Weather Service when conditions are favorable for the formation of tornados. They are usually issued for a 4-8 hour time period and well in advance of the actual occurrence. During the watch people should review their tornado safety plans and be prepared to move to a safe place.

Tornado Warning is issued by the National Weather Service when a tornado is indicated by radar or sighted by trained spotters. People in the warned area should see shelter immediately. They can be issued without a Tornado Watch being in effect. Tornado Warnings are usually issued for a duration of 30 minutes.

Seeking Shelter during a tornado Warning

  • Seek shelter in the lowest level of your home. If there is no basement, go to an inner hallway, or a smaller inner room without windows, such as a bathroom or closet. Keep away from all windows.
  • If you do not have a basement, but are close to the Nevada Public Library, a Tornado Shelter is in the basement.
  • For added protection, get under something strong, such as a workbench or heavy table.
  • Cover your body with a blanket or sleeping bag.
  • Take your car keys; should a tornado hit your area, your car may be operable, but keys would be lost in the rubble.
  • Collect your Family Disaster Supplies Kit and keep it with you.
  • Keep your pet on a leash or in a carrier.
  • Get storm updates from The Weather Channel, your local TV or radio station, or NOAA Weather Radio.
  • Stay indoors until officials say it is safe.
  • Go to the basement or to an inside hallway at the lowest level. Keep away from all windows.
  • Avoid places with wide-span roofs such as gymnasiums, auditoriums, cafeterias, large hallways or shopping malls.
  • Use your arms to protect your head and neck.
  • Leave immediately and take shelter inside a building.
  • If you do not have a basement, but are close to the Nevada Public Library, a Tornado Shelter is in the basement.
  • Seek shelter on foot if possible. DO NOT DRIVE YOUR CAR! Do not get under a mobile home.
  • If shelter is not available, lie in a ditch, ravine, culvert or low-lying area away from the unit.
  • Use your arms or a piece of clothing to protect your head and neck.
  • Plan ahead. Make arrangements with friends or neighbors that have basements. If the weather looks threatening, go there.
  • Encourage your mobile home group to develop it’s own tornado shelter.
  • Try to find a residence or other building to seek shelter in.
  • Avoid areas with many trees.
  • Do not seek shelter in a vehicle.
  • Do not seek shelter under and overpass or bridge.
  • Lie down flat in a gully, ditch, or low spot in the ground.
  • Protect your head with your arms.
  • NEVER try to out-drive a tornado. Tornados can change direction quickly and can lift up a car or truck and toss it through the air.
  • Stop immediately, get out and take shelter in a nearby building.
  • If shelter is not available, lie in a ditch, ravine, culvert or low-lying area away from the vehicle.
  • Use your arms or a piece of clothing to protect your head and neck.
  • Do not get under or next to your vehicle; it may roll over on you.

How to prepare for severe weather

Designate an area in the home as a shelter, and practice having everyone in the family go there in response to a tornado threat.

In case of tornado, flooding or other disaster, this inventory will be invaluable to you in settling your insurance claim. Make sure you keep your inventory in a safe place, like a bank safe deposit box.

See below or for more tips visit www.disastercenter.com/guide/family.htm

Family Disaster Preparedness

  • Decide where to go if at home, school, work, outdoors, or in a car when a tornado or flood warning is issued.
  • Update these plans every school year and as places of employment and residence change
  • Test your family plan by conducting a drill or exercise with family members

Family Disaster Communication

  • Designate a friend or relative outside your town as your contact in the event you are separated from family members during a tornado or flood.
  • Agree upon a place where family members can meet if separated.

Family Disaster Supplies Kit

Essentials:

  • Battery-operated radio
  • Flashlight
  • Extra batteries
  • Water (One gallon of water per person for 3 days)
  • High calorie, non-perishable food (remember a can opener)
    • Non-perishable contents should be changed or replaced every six months
  • First Aid kit (one for your home and one for each car)
  • Prescription and non-prescription drugs
  • Tools and supplies (paper cups, utility knife, hammer, matches, etc.)
  • Hygiene Kit (toilet paper, paper towels, household chlorine bleach)
  • Clothing and bedding
  • Necessities for baby
  • Important family documents (insurance, copies of drivers licenses or other ID)
  • Entertainment (games and books)

Pet Disaster Pet Care

  • Water & food for three days.
  • Photos of your pet with you for identification if separated from your pets.
  • Current vaccination records
  • Leashes, collars, carriers and toys
  • Bowls & can openers
  • First Aid Kit & any medications your pet may take.
  • Keep in mind that most shelters do not accept pets.
  • In the event of disaster a local animal shelter, veterinarian or kennel may shelter your pet.

Contact your local Emergency Management Agency. Story County Emergency Management resides out of the Story County Administration building at 900 6th Street in Nevada. Emergency Management Coordinator can be reached at 515-382-7315.

 
 

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