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UPDATE, 11AM Monday: The statewide tornado drill has been moved to Thursday at 1:30PM due to the possibility of severe weather in Missouri and Kansas Tuesday.
If you hear a tornado siren around mid-day Tuesday, you should know it’s just a drill. With tornado season just around the corner, the National Weather Service and the state of Missouri are giving citizens a chance to practice emergency procedures. KSMU’s Matt Evans has more.
People tend to look forward to spring: it’s the beginning of baseball season, gardeners can get back out in the dirt, and there’s no more snow and ice to worry about. But there’s one part of spring that almost no one likes to see coming: tornado season.
Last year 45 tornadoes touched down across the state, killing three people. In southwest Missouri, just one storm system produced more than 20 of those tornadoes. On Tuesday, tornado sirens will blare across the state for a state-wide tornado drill. Steve Runnels is the warning coordination meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Springfield.
“At about 1:30 tornado sirens will sound; weather radios will go off. Ultimately, it’s at that point that we hope that all citizens and businesses put their tornado plan into action.”
Runnels says this is the perfect time to dust off the tornado plans because a bulk of the tornadoes occur between April and early June in southwest Missouri. He says one of the best things people can do to prepare themselves for a tornado is to have a plan, and practice the plan.
“What’s most important when it comes to a tornado warning is that you know in advance where to go.”
Runnels says the safest place to go inside a home is the basement or into the middle part of the house.
There is a slight chance for thunderstorms on Tuesday. If there is bad weather, the state-wide drill will be moved to Thursday at 1:30.
For KSMU News, I’m Matt Evans.