Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-02-2007, 04:41 PM   #1
Cyber Phrenologist
 
Radio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Fayetteville, GA
Posts: 1,699
Exclamation Tornado Preparedness - You might wanna read this...

I cut this out of a post I make over on rv.net just about every spring...for some reason I let it slip by this year...maybe 'cuz here in Georgia were in a drought and would pay good money for a decent thunderstorm or two.

Enjoy!

Preparedness, that is knowing what is going on as far as severe weather is concerned, and then having a plan, is the key. While this post addresses tornado events, the same measures should be considered for severe thunderstorm activity where high winds, hail and lightning pose a significant hazard.

OK, HERE IS WHAT TO DO, AND WHAT *NOT* TO DO:

Shelter:

1. Be prepared. Know where the closest shelter is, even if that is only a ditch. When checking in to a camp ground, ask where the storm shelter is located. Try to get somewhere under ground, like in a basement. Know where you would go, just as you learn the exits in
hotel or airplane. When you head for the shelter take your shoes and a pillow to cover your head. Get in the center of a substantial building, away from windows. (If I ran a campground, I'd have a shelter area, which would also be the laundry/game room/vending area. Most tornado deaths are from impact with flying debris, like lumber, so a structure with substantial, thick walls is what you need to hide in. This is why you move to the center of the house whaen at home. Put as much wall as you can between you and flying debris.

2. Be informed.

Major storm systems are predicted days in advance, although specific damage events are predicted only minutes ahead. Get a Weather Radio. Get the kind with SAME technology.

3. In the event of a tornado abandon your trailer AND your tow vehicle. I saw the reports where tornados blew a freight train off its tracks. (My physics major son reports to me that it only takes a sudden 10% pressure differntial to tip over a railroad car.) If parked in the campground, run to a shelter. If riding down the road, stop, abandon the rig and get in a ditch, well away from the RV. Your rig/tow will become airborn and get smashed. Your job is to survive and call the insurance company.

A note here: Cars and trucks are good in earthquakes and lightning. But not tornados.

4. DO NOT seek shelter under a highway overpass.There is a famous video where a family and a TV crew get trapped under a bridge. They were lucky, not smart, in that the bridge had exposed girders to hide between, however most modern bridges do not. Also, the bridge creates a venturi effect such that the wind under the bridge is faster than the wind going over it. A bridge might offer protection from hail, but not tornados. GO GET IN A DITCH AND JUST ACKNOWLEDGE THE FACT THE RIG IS TOAST!

If you watch this video closely you will see a tiny black dot bouncing around in the background, a ways down the road. The 'dot' is a minivan and its occupant does not survive being repeatedly dropped from altitude by the tornado.

Out in the flatlands they chase storms because with unobstructed visibility they can see them coming for miles. Here in Georgia and most other places we have hills and tall trees that obscure the tornado until it's on top of you. We don't chase storms here. Don't expect to see it (or hear it) coming. If you can hear it, it's too late. Seek shelter once you have the warning.

Entire cities have been wiped out in the last few weeks, but some had warning before the tornado hit, allowing people to seek shelter.


Weather Alert Radio


From time to time there is discussion on the forum about receiving National Weather Service information via radio.(Weather Alert) The SAME (Specific Area Message Encoding) technology was developed to give the public A FEW MINUTES warning, just enough time to run for cover. A prudent RVer will keep an ear out for bad weather while it is still several hours away, giving time to pack up and move out of harms way.

Weather Radios can be programmed with a State/County area identifier. (See NOAA web site listed below for your area identifier.) Most SAME radios can be left unprogrammed, and this will cause the radio to alarm on every alert message it receives whether it is for your area or not. The only requirement is to be tuned to the proper frequencies for the area you are in. Frequencies also available at NOAA web site.(The constant alarms given by an unprogrammed radio can either be interesting or annoying depending on how much of a waether buff you are. You can track the progress of the storm system by finding the counties on a map.)

Here are the 7 frequencies used by the NWS. They can be programmed into any VHF scanner. The receiver in most scanners is superior to those in CB/WX radios and some cheaper WX radios. And better antennas are available for scanners as well. Also note these frequencies can be recieved by your VHF TV antenna that came with your rig.

1. 162.400
2. 162.425
3. 162.450
4. 162.475
5. 162.500
6. 162.525
7. 162.550

A regular scanner will not support SAME signaling. However, it will still receive the broadcasts allowing you to check the local forecast each day. Weather alert radios are available stand alone, or built into AM/FM radios, CBs, FRS and other devices. I recommend Radio Shack simply because there's one on every corner and they keep weather radios in stock. One feature I look for is a radio that runs on 12VDC and comes with a 120 VAC wall wart power supply. Can be used with or without shore power.

Watches and Warnings

A watch means conditions are right for severe weather events to occur and you should be paying attention to events as they happen. (Gather the lawn chairs, fold up the awning, plan indoor meals)Know where the shelter is if you need it.

A warning means there is severe weather event in progress, a tornado sighted or other event is happening NOW and you should seek shelter NOW.

Also note the NWS alert system will be used to warn of other environmental problems such as evacuations due to chemical spills, terrorist attack or what ever.

Emergency Equipment

Your usual emergency equipment, flashlights, raincoats and shoes will suffice, but having them available quickly is the most important. I would not buy anything special to prepare for a tornado event. A first aid kit and some other emergency supplies could be kept in a small backpack and grabbed on your way out of the RV and taken to the shelter. In any case, a pillow to cover your head and shoes to protect your feet from broken glass and such is a bare minimum.

Additional On-line Resources

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/

The National Weather Service provides realtime radar, satellite and warning information. You can find a feild office near you for local forecast information. The SAME area identifiers are available here. Also river and flooding information.

http://www.weather.com

The Weather Channel of cable TV fame. Remember, only the NWS can issue official warning statements.

http://www.hwn.org

Hurricane Watch Net, for those in hurricane prone areas. The all in one source for hurricane data. Real Time Reporting.

I gained this little bit of knowledge from working net control on the Georgia Skywarn Net, a group of amateur radio operators (and others) who report observations to the National Weather Service during severe weather events. I have the privilege of relaying field reports to the meteorologists on the forecast floor in real time. This is a volunteer effort on my part as one of about 20 operators at WX4PTC, NWS Peachtree City, GA.

Radio
__________________

__________________
Radio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-2007, 05:33 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
MRimmer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Memphis, TN
Posts: 1,067
Great info!!!


Thanks for sharing


Mike
__________________

__________________
MRimmer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-2007, 08:01 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Justin, Tx
Posts: 2,671
I made this post a sticky as it is some very good information.

Thanks!
__________________
aintgotnun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-2007, 09:24 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
MRimmer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Memphis, TN
Posts: 1,067
Thanks Greg its good info there


Mike
__________________
MRimmer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2007, 03:58 PM   #5
The Jolly Mon
 
NDJollyMon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: ND...HELP!
Posts: 1,685
Send a message via Yahoo to NDJollyMon
This is really great info...thanks for sharing.
I have a WX Radio with SAME technology. I also have Motorola walkies that receive WX that we take camping. I have a scanner too, but it stays home.

The new SALEM has WX on the stereo...which I haven't even tried out yet. Better do it soon!

Last season...we ran from tornadoes on two nights on the same trip. The first night...they evacuated the entire campground as it hit. The campground was damaged a bit...and I saw A LOT of awnings ripped completely off motorhomes/trailers. It's unbelievable what wind can do to an awning!

Have a plan for bad weather...very good advice. Trying to figure out where to go when your butt is on the line is not fun!

Be safe out there!
__________________
Pete (Jolly Mon)

2018 Wildwood Grand Lodge 42 DLTS
-Seasonal Space, Northern MN.
-2017 Sylvan 8522 LZ LES/115 Merc/Sea Legs
NDJollyMon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2007, 10:25 PM   #6
Cyber Phrenologist
 
Radio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Fayetteville, GA
Posts: 1,699
Thumbs up that's cool...

Quote:
Originally Posted by NDJollyMon View Post
The new SALEM has WX on the stereo...which I haven't even tried out yet. Better do it soon!
Now that's cool. That's what I would put in an RV if I was in the business. In fact what I'd really do is make a WX radio/am/fm/alarm clock that mounted on the bedroom wall. It would be 12 volt with a 9 volt battery back up.

And it would be standard on every model.

Radio
__________________
Radio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-14-2007, 12:04 AM   #7
The Jolly Mon
 
NDJollyMon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: ND...HELP!
Posts: 1,685
Send a message via Yahoo to NDJollyMon
That would be a great RV radio!
I tried out the WX on the Concertone tonight. There are seven channels, similar to the GMRS radios we have.
__________________
Pete (Jolly Mon)

2018 Wildwood Grand Lodge 42 DLTS
-Seasonal Space, Northern MN.
-2017 Sylvan 8522 LZ LES/115 Merc/Sea Legs
NDJollyMon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2007, 10:00 PM   #8
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Radio View Post
I cut this out of a post I make over on rv.net just about every spring...for some reason I let it slip by this year...maybe 'cuz here in Georgia were in a drought and would pay good money for a decent thunderstorm or two.

Enjoy!

Preparedness, that is knowing what is going on as far as severe weather is concerned, and then having a plan, is the key. While this post addresses tornado events, the same measures should be considered for severe thunderstorm activity where high winds, hail and lightning pose a significant hazard.

OK, HERE IS WHAT TO DO, AND WHAT *NOT* TO DO:

Shelter:

1. Be prepared. Know where the closest shelter is, even if that is only a ditch. When checking in to a camp ground, ask where the storm shelter is located. Try to get somewhere under ground, like in a basement. Know where you would go, just as you learn the exits in
hotel or airplane. When you head for the shelter take your shoes and a pillow to cover your head. Get in the center of a substantial building, away from windows. (If I ran a campground, I'd have a shelter area, which would also be the laundry/game room/vending area. Most tornado deaths are from impact with flying debris, like lumber, so a structure with substantial, thick walls is what you need to hide in. This is why you move to the center of the house whaen at home. Put as much wall as you can between you and flying debris.

2. Be informed.

Major storm systems are predicted days in advance, although specific damage events are predicted only minutes ahead. Get a Weather Radio. Get the kind with SAME technology.

3. In the event of a tornado abandon your trailer AND your tow vehicle. I saw the reports where tornados blew a freight train off its tracks. (My physics major son reports to me that it only takes a sudden 10% pressure differntial to tip over a railroad car.) If parked in the campground, run to a shelter. If riding down the road, stop, abandon the rig and get in a ditch, well away from the RV. Your rig/tow will become airborn and get smashed. Your job is to survive and call the insurance company.

A note here: Cars and trucks are good in earthquakes and lightning. But not tornados.

4. DO NOT seek shelter under a highway overpass.There is a famous video where a family and a TV crew get trapped under a bridge. They were lucky, not smart, in that the bridge had exposed girders to hide between, however most modern bridges do not. Also, the bridge creates a venturi effect such that the wind under the bridge is faster than the wind going over it. A bridge might offer protection from hail, but not tornados. GO GET IN A DITCH AND JUST ACKNOWLEDGE THE FACT THE RIG IS TOAST!

If you watch this video closely you will see a tiny black dot bouncing around in the background, a ways down the road. The 'dot' is a minivan and its occupant does not survive being repeatedly dropped from altitude by the tornado.

Out in the flatlands they chase storms because with unobstructed visibility they can see them coming for miles. Here in Georgia and most other places we have hills and tall trees that obscure the tornado until it's on top of you. We don't chase storms here. Don't expect to see it (or hear it) coming. If you can hear it, it's too late. Seek shelter once you have the warning.

Entire cities have been wiped out in the last few weeks, but some had warning before the tornado hit, allowing people to seek shelter.


Weather Alert Radio


From time to time there is discussion on the forum about receiving National Weather Service information via radio.(Weather Alert) The SAME (Specific Area Message Encoding) technology was developed to give the public A FEW MINUTES warning, just enough time to run for cover. A prudent RVer will keep an ear out for bad weather while it is still several hours away, giving time to pack up and move out of harms way.

Weather Radios can be programmed with a State/County area identifier. (See NOAA web site listed below for your area identifier.) Most SAME radios can be left unprogrammed, and this will cause the radio to alarm on every alert message it receives whether it is for your area or not. The only requirement is to be tuned to the proper frequencies for the area you are in. Frequencies also available at NOAA web site.(The constant alarms given by an unprogrammed radio can either be interesting or annoying depending on how much of a waether buff you are. You can track the progress of the storm system by finding the counties on a map.)

Here are the 7 frequencies used by the NWS. They can be programmed into any VHF scanner. The receiver in most scanners is superior to those in CB/WX radios and some cheaper WX radios. And better antennas are available for scanners as well. Also note these frequencies can be recieved by your VHF TV antenna that came with your rig.

1. 162.400
2. 162.425
3. 162.450
4. 162.475
5. 162.500
6. 162.525
7. 162.550

A regular scanner will not support SAME signaling. However, it will still receive the broadcasts allowing you to check the local forecast each day. Weather alert radios are available stand alone, or built into AM/FM radios, CBs, FRS and other devices. I recommend Radio Shack simply because there's one on every corner and they keep weather radios in stock. One feature I look for is a radio that runs on 12VDC and comes with a 120 VAC wall wart power supply. Can be used with or without shore power.

Watches and Warnings

A watch means conditions are right for severe weather events to occur and you should be paying attention to events as they happen. (Gather the lawn chairs, fold up the awning, plan indoor meals)Know where the shelter is if you need it.

A warning means there is severe weather event in progress, a tornado sighted or other event is happening NOW and you should seek shelter NOW.

Also note the NWS alert system will be used to warn of other environmental problems such as evacuations due to chemical spills, terrorist attack or what ever.

Emergency Equipment

Your usual emergency equipment, flashlights, raincoats and shoes will suffice, but having them available quickly is the most important. I would not buy anything special to prepare for a tornado event. A first aid kit and some other emergency supplies could be kept in a small backpack and grabbed on your way out of the RV and taken to the shelter. In any case, a pillow to cover your head and shoes to protect your feet from broken glass and such is a bare minimum.

Additional On-line Resources

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/

The National Weather Service provides realtime radar, satellite and warning information. You can find a feild office near you for local forecast information. The SAME area identifiers are available here. Also river and flooding information.

http://www.weather.com

The Weather Channel of cable TV fame. Remember, only the NWS can issue official warning statements.

http://www.hwn.org

Hurricane Watch Net, for those in hurricane prone areas. The all in one source for hurricane data. Real Time Reporting.

I gained this little bit of knowledge from working net control on the Georgia Skywarn Net, a group of amateur radio operators (and others) who report observations to the National Weather Service during severe weather events. I have the privilege of relaying field reports to the meteorologists on the forecast floor in real time. This is a volunteer effort on my part as one of about 20 operators at WX4PTC, NWS Peachtree City, GA.

Radio
Hello:
Just read your info on the tornado preparedness, and wanted to share our experience. Last winter we camped in the florida panhandle, haven't camped in over 30 years, and had two tornado warnings while we were there. When we asked where to go for shelter they told us there was no shelter, and to just hold on. To this day I am still trying to find out what to hold on too.

Take Care

JG
__________________
James Gibbons is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2008, 09:04 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
wildwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 379
Quote:
Originally Posted by Radio View Post
I cut this out of a post I make over on rv.net just about every spring...for some reason I let it slip by this year...maybe 'cuz here in Georgia were in a drought and would pay good money for a decent thunderstorm or two.

Enjoy!


Preparedness, that is knowing what is going on as far as severe weather is concerned, and then having a plan, is the key. While this post addresses tornado events, the same measures should be considered for severe thunderstorm activity where high winds, hail and lightning pose a significant hazard.

OK, HERE IS WHAT TO DO, AND WHAT *NOT* TO DO:

Shelter:

1. Be prepared. Know where the closest shelter is, even if that is only a ditch. When checking in to a camp ground, ask where the storm shelter is located. Try to get somewhere under ground, like in a basement. Know where you would go, just as you learn the exits in
hotel or airplane. When you head for the shelter take your shoes and a pillow to cover your head. Get in the center of a substantial building, away from windows. (If I ran a campground, I'd have a shelter area, which would also be the laundry/game room/vending area. Most tornado deaths are from impact with flying debris, like lumber, so a structure with substantial, thick walls is what you need to hide in. This is why you move to the center of the house whaen at home. Put as much wall as you can between you and flying debris.

2. Be informed.

Major storm systems are predicted days in advance, although specific damage events are predicted only minutes ahead. Get a Weather Radio. Get the kind with SAME technology.

3. In the event of a tornado abandon your trailer AND your tow vehicle. I saw the reports where tornados blew a freight train off its tracks. (My physics major son reports to me that it only takes a sudden 10% pressure differntial to tip over a railroad car.) If parked in the campground, run to a shelter. If riding down the road, stop, abandon the rig and get in a ditch, well away from the RV. Your rig/tow will become airborn and get smashed. Your job is to survive and call the insurance company.

A note here: Cars and trucks are good in earthquakes and lightning. But not tornados.

4. DO NOT seek shelter under a highway overpass.There is a famous video where a family and a TV crew get trapped under a bridge. They were lucky, not smart, in that the bridge had exposed girders to hide between, however most modern bridges do not. Also, the bridge creates a venturi effect such that the wind under the bridge is faster than the wind going over it. A bridge might offer protection from hail, but not tornados. GO GET IN A DITCH AND JUST ACKNOWLEDGE THE FACT THE RIG IS TOAST!

If you watch this video closely you will see a tiny black dot bouncing around in the background, a ways down the road. The 'dot' is a minivan and its occupant does not survive being repeatedly dropped from altitude by the tornado.

Out in the flatlands they chase storms because with unobstructed visibility they can see them coming for miles. Here in Georgia and most other places we have hills and tall trees that obscure the tornado until it's on top of you. We don't chase storms here. Don't expect to see it (or hear it) coming. If you can hear it, it's too late. Seek shelter once you have the warning.

Entire cities have been wiped out in the last few weeks, but some had warning before the tornado hit, allowing people to seek shelter.


Weather Alert Radio


From time to time there is discussion on the forum about receiving National Weather Service information via radio.(Weather Alert) The SAME (Specific Area Message Encoding) technology was developed to give the public A FEW MINUTES warning, just enough time to run for cover. A prudent RVer will keep an ear out for bad weather while it is still several hours away, giving time to pack up and move out of harms way.

Weather Radios can be programmed with a State/County area identifier. (See NOAA web site listed below for your area identifier.) Most SAME radios can be left unprogrammed, and this will cause the radio to alarm on every alert message it receives whether it is for your area or not. The only requirement is to be tuned to the proper frequencies for the area you are in. Frequencies also available at NOAA web site.(The constant alarms given by an unprogrammed radio can either be interesting or annoying depending on how much of a waether buff you are. You can track the progress of the storm system by finding the counties on a map.)

Here are the 7 frequencies used by the NWS. They can be programmed into any VHF scanner. The receiver in most scanners is superior to those in CB/WX radios and some cheaper WX radios. And better antennas are available for scanners as well. Also note these frequencies can be recieved by your VHF TV antenna that came with your rig.

1. 162.400
2. 162.425
3. 162.450
4. 162.475
5. 162.500
6. 162.525
7. 162.550

A regular scanner will not support SAME signaling. However, it will still receive the broadcasts allowing you to check the local forecast each day. Weather alert radios are available stand alone, or built into AM/FM radios, CBs, FRS and other devices. I recommend Radio Shack simply because there's one on every corner and they keep weather radios in stock. One feature I look for is a radio that runs on 12VDC and comes with a 120 VAC wall wart power supply. Can be used with or without shore power.

Watches and Warnings

A watch means conditions are right for severe weather events to occur and you should be paying attention to events as they happen. (Gather the lawn chairs, fold up the awning, plan indoor meals)Know where the shelter is if you need it.

A warning means there is severe weather event in progress, a tornado sighted or other event is happening NOW and you should seek shelter NOW.

Also note the NWS alert system will be used to warn of other environmental problems such as evacuations due to chemical spills, terrorist attack or what ever.

Emergency Equipment

Your usual emergency equipment, flashlights, raincoats and shoes will suffice, but having them available quickly is the most important. I would not buy anything special to prepare for a tornado event. A first aid kit and some other emergency supplies could be kept in a small backpack and grabbed on your way out of the RV and taken to the shelter. In any case, a pillow to cover your head and shoes to protect your feet from broken glass and such is a bare minimum.

Additional On-line Resources

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/

The National Weather Service provides realtime radar, satellite and warning information. You can find a feild office near you for local forecast information. The SAME area identifiers are available here. Also river and flooding information.

http://www.weather.com

The Weather Channel of cable TV fame. Remember, only the NWS can issue official warning statements.

http://www.hwn.org

Hurricane Watch Net, for those in hurricane prone areas. The all in one source for hurricane data. Real Time Reporting.

I gained this little bit of knowledge from working net control on the Georgia Skywarn Net, a group of amateur radio operators (and others) who report observations to the National Weather Service during severe weather events. I have the privilege of relaying field reports to the meteorologists on the forecast floor in real time. This is a volunteer effort on my part as one of about 20 operators at WX4PTC, NWS Peachtree City, GA.

Radio


thanks, great info

Last summer we were camping in SC and a bad storm arose. It destroyed 100 awnings in the campground in few minutes. always good to be prepared.

phil
__________________
wildwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2008, 09:21 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
welshman599's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Quispamsis NB Canada
Posts: 1,026
Send a message via MSN to welshman599
Great advice Radio... the only thing I'd maybe add is if you're travelling, know the county you're in. I was in Virginia a few years back and the warnings started "for so and so county" and I had no friggin idea what county I was in. Talk about a helpless feeling.
__________________

__________________
  • Salem 401-2b; 31" Sony Trinitron and two channels on the antenna.
  • Smokin' hot wife... 2 boys, 25 and 10.

83 sweet sweet days camped in 2008 - not easy in my neck of the woods!
welshman599 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




ForestRiverForums.com is not in any way associated with Forest River, Inc. or its associated RV manufacturing divisions.


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:58 AM.