Protecting your home and community

It’s National Severe Weather Preparedness Week!

Be a Force of Nature graphic from the NWSWith the unwieldy name and typical tongue-twisting acronym, National Severe Weather Preparedness Week (NSWPW…NISSWAPOW?) kicks off this week (yesterday, Sunday March 2nd, actually). The NOAA site notes that

In 2013, there were seven weather and climate disaster events with losses exceeding $1 billion each across the United States. These events included five severe weather and tornado events, a major flood event, and the western drought/heat wave. Overall, these events killed 109 people and had significant economic effects on the areas impacted.

Record-breaking snowfall, cold temperatures, extended drought, high heat, severe flooding, violent tornadoes, and massive hurricanes have all combined to reach the greatest number of multi-billion dollar weather disasters in the nation’s history.

NOAA's NSWPW blurb about it's program Being prepared for severe weather doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. A few simple steps, such as having a disaster supplies kit, could help save your life. NOAA’s National Weather-Ready Nation division has launched the theme, “Be a Force of Nature.” They’ve divvied up the week into a daily theme during the week. On Monday, the theme is Know your risk Hurricanes, droughts, tornadoes, snowstorms, flooding – severe weather impacts every part of the country. The first step to becoming weather-ready is to understand the type of hazardous weather that can affect where you live and work, and how the weather could impact you and your family. What you can do:

  • Bookmark to get the latest forecast information.
  • Follow the National Weather Service on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Read the State of the Climate reports to discover historical trends.
  • Participate in America’s Preparathon, where there are multiple resources for  individuals and families, workplaces, K-12 schools and institutions of higher education, faith-based organizations and community-based organizations. There is also information about protective actions, mitigation measures for a range of hazards, and risk data.

NSWPW Poster 2014If you have kids Have little ones at home? Teach them about the weather with the Young Meteorologists Program. There is a free game where you go on a severe weather preparedness adventure and earn a Young Meteorologists Certificate. There is a collection of resources for educators as well. Tuesday’s theme is, “Make a Plan,” Wednesday’s theme is, “Build a Kit,” Thursday’s theme is, “Stay Tuned for Weather Alerts,” Friday’s theme is, “Be An Example,” and Saturday’s theme is, “Just the Beginning.” You can also help spread the word about National Severe Weather Preparedness Week with an online toolkit. It contains tweets, a sample blog post, a presentation you can give and much more. Save lives by letting your friends and family know about the importance of preparing for the worst.

The devastating impacts of extreme events can be reduced through improved readiness, which is why the Weather-Ready Nation initiative is so important. Through operational initiatives, NOAA’s National Weather Service is transforming its operations to help America respond. In the end, emergency managers, first responders, government officials, businesses and the public will be empowered to make fast, smart decisions to save lives and livelihoods.

Image of Make a Plan document

Daily themes for National Severe Weather Preparedness Week:

See NOAA and FEMA’s press release here

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