Severe Weather

Tornadoes, Hurricanes, and Other Strong Storms

Watch: A watch is the first alert issued by the National Weather Service when severe storms are possible in your area. This watch is issued when the conditions are favorable for the formation of a severe storm. Remain alert for approaching storms, however you may continue with your routine, or any other activities. Turn on a battery-operated radio to stay alert of any developments.

Warning: This warning is issued when a severe storm has been sighted or indicated by weather radar. If a warning has been issued and the sky becomes threatening, move to your pre-designated place of safety. Turn on a battery-operated radio and wait for further instructions.

Safety Procedures

  1. The best protection is an underground shelter or basement, or a substantial steel-framed or reinforced concrete building. (If none is available, take refuge in other parts as indicated below.)
  2. In any facility always go to the lowest floor possible.
  3. If your residence has no basement, take cover under heavy furniture on the ground floor in the center of the building, or in a small room on the ground floor that is away from outside walls and windows. (As a last resort, go outside to a nearby ditch, excavation, culvert, or ravine.)
  4. Stay away from windows to avoid flying debris.
  5. If you are outside in open country, drive away from the tornado’s path, at a right angle to it. If there is not time to do this – or if you are walking – take cover and lie flat in the nearest depression, such as a ditch, culvert, excavation, or ravine.
  6. SCHOOLS – If the school building is a good steel-framed or a reinforced concrete building, stay inside away from the windows and remain near an inside wall on the lower floors, if possible.
  7. The large brick buildings on this University campus are of reinforced construction and should provide adequate shelter. If in a smaller facility go to the basement or to the nearest brick-frame facility.
  8. AVOID AUDITORIUMS AND GYMNASIUMS or large metal buildings with large, poorly supported roofs.
  9. OFFICE BUILDINGS – Go to an interior hallway on the lowest floor or to a designated shelter area. Stay away from windows.

Flood Procedures

Flood Watch or Flash Flood Watch: Flooding is possible within the designated area – be alert and ready to evacuate if so informed.

Flood Warning or Flash Flood Warning: Flooding is occurring, or is imminent, in the designated area. Take necessary precautions at once. Depending on how close you are to the designated area you should act quickly. You may only have minutes or a few seconds.

Urban and Small Stream Flooding: Flooding of small streams, streets, and low-lying areas, such as at railroad underpasses and in urban storm drains is occurring within the designated area. You should act quickly and move to higher ground.