Michigan Committee for Severe Weather Awareness: Tornado safety

According to the Michigan Committee for Severe Weather Awareness, tornadoes can occur any time of year, but they are especially common in our state during the late spring and early summer months. One of nature’s most violent storms, tornadoes can devastate homes and property in just seconds.

Don’t wait to learn about tornadoes and how to stay safe in the event of severe weather. Michigan just observed Severe Weather Awareness Week in Michigan at the end of March, apt timing to remind all of the importance of being prepared.

Do you know the tornado-hazard terms? A tornado watch means tornadoes are possible. When a watch is issued, you should move near to a sturdy building allowing you to quickly take shelter there if conditions are upgraded to a warning or if you see signs of a tornado approaching. During a watch, remain alert and watch the sky for approaching storms, and stay tuned to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio or television for updates. A tornado warning means a tornado has been sighted or detected by weather radar. When a warning is issued, take shelter immediately.

Find out more about tornadoes — including how to be prepared and react quickly — on the tornadoes page of the Department of Homeland Security official website, ready.gov/tornadoes. Also, review this information sheet to learn how to be prepared for a tornado (PDF).

The City of Ann Arbor conducts routine warning siren testing March–October at 1 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month.