Home  |  Sitemap  |  Contact Us  |  Translate  | COVID-19

Fire & Rescue

Tornado Safety

A tornado is a narrow, violently rotating column of air that extends from a thunderstorm to the ground. Because wind is invisible, it is hard to see a tornado unless it forms a condensation funnel made up of water droplets, dust and debris. Tornadoes can be among the most violent phenomena of all atmospheric storms we experience. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Midwest and the Southeast--which includes parts of Texas--have a greater risk of tornadoes. 


How to stay safe

(Safety information courtesy of FEMA)

Prepare NOW

  • Know your area's tornado risk.
  • Know the signs of a tornado, including a rotating funnel-shaped cloud, an approaching cloud of debris, or a loud roar--similar to a freight train.
  • Sign up for your community's warning system. If you haven't already, sign up for WarnCentralTexas.org to receive FREE emergency and weather notifications via phone, text, and e-mail.  The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts. Lastly, be familiar with our outdoor emergency sirens' warning tone.
  • Pay attention to weather reports.

  • Identify and practice going to a safe shelter.

  • Consider constructing a safe room that meets FEMA or ICC 500 standards.

Survive DURING

  • Immediately go to a safe location!
  • Take additional cover by shielding your head and neck with your arms and putting materials, such as furniture and blankets around you.
  • Listen to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, or local alerting systems for current emergency information and instructions.

  • If you are in a car or outdoors and cannot get into a building, cover your head and neck with your arms and cover your body with a coat or blanket, if possible.


  • Keep listening to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, and local public safety agencies for updated information. 
  • If you are trapped, cover your mouth with a cloth or mask to avoid breathing dust. Try to send a text, bang on a pipe or wall, or use a whistle instead of shouting.
  • Stay clear of fallen power lines or broken utility lines.
  • Do not enter damaged buildings until you are told that they are safe.
  • Save your phone calls for emergencies. Phones are often down or busy after a disaster. Use text messaging or social media to communicate with family and friends.
  • Be careful during cleanup. Wear thick-soled shoes, long pants and work gloves.

Copyright © 2016, City of Lockhart, TX

powered by ezTaskTitanium TM