We’re in the midst of Florida’s Severe Weather Awareness Week. It’s a with National Weather Service in Melbourne and the Florida Division of Emergency Management used to make sure you and your neighbors know the signs for weather and natural hazards, and how to protect life and property from them.
Each day focuses on a specific weather event. Monday focused on lightning – as it should, considering it’s the most unpredictable of all severe weather elements, and Central Florida sees the most dense concentrations of strikes, and the most related deaths, in the country.
Tuesday’s focus was on rip currents at the beach, and Wednesday will be about tornadoes. That also can be an important subject around here this time of year – a particularly violent F3 tornado ripped through the Ponderosa RV Park and Lakeside Estates in February 1998 that killed numerous residents.
To prevent that, Osceola County’s Emergency Operations Center is encouraging an exercise. At 10 a.m. Wednesday, NOAA and other weather radios will go off in test mode, and subscribers to AlertOsceola (if you didn’t already know, keep reading) will get an alert as well. Residents and businesses are encouraged to take part in The Great Tornado Drill — go to the best place of safety in their homes or offices – an interior room , hallway, bathroom or closet. Take a picture of your and your family or colleagues in the safe spot, and post using the hashtag #TornadoDrill to the EOC’s Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/OsceolaEOC/) or Twitter (@OsceolaEOC) pages.
Thursday and Friday will focus on brush fires (keep an eye out, it has been dry, folks) and hurricanes (June 1 and the start of the 2020 Atlantic storm season will be here in no time).
To join Alert Osceola, go to www.alertosceola.org, or text “AlertOsceola” to 888777 to get instructions on your phone.
Because, staying safe is one of the most positive things you can do.