8 Tornado Safety Tips For Your Business


1. Know the Signs of a Tornado

The first way to protect yourself from a tornado is to know the signs. Tornadoes can form quickly, but there are a few different warning signs that can help you identify the potential for them.

  • Dark, often greenish sky
  • Large hail
  • A large, dark, low-lying cloud (particularly if rotating)
  • A loud roar

 

2. Listen to Warnings and Watches

And know the difference!  The National Weather Service has both tornado warnings and watches to help people stay updated on severe weather. Make sure there is always someone at your business paying attention to these statuses.

In the case of a tornado watch:

  • Tornadoes are possible
  • Remain alert for approaching storms
  • Watch the sky and stay tuned to a NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio, or television for further information
#TornadoWarning: Tornadoes are possible - a warning has not been issued Click To Tweet

In the case of a tornado warning:

  • A tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar
  • Take shelter immediately
#TornadoWarning: A tornado has been sighted or indicated by radar Click To Tweet

3. Have a Work Tornado Safety Kit

Before a tornado watch or warning is issued, your workplace should have a safety kit ready to go. Tornado safety kits should include items, like:

  • Battery-powered radio
  • Flashlights
  • Extra batteries
  • Prescription medications
  • First-aid kits
  • Water and canned or dried food

 

4. Identify a Safe Place

The next tornado safety tip is to identify a tornado-safe location at your workplace.

If there is a basement…

Make sure your employees know how to get there quickly in the case of a tornado.Go directly to an enclosed, windowless area in the center of the building —

If your workplace does not have a basement…

Go directly to an enclosed, windowless area in the center of the building. Make sure this location is away from glass and on the lowest floor possible. If you are in an office space with multiple floors and multiple companies, make sure you follow the buildings specific instructions if it has them. Once there, crouch down and cover your head.

Go directly to an enclosed, windowless area in the center of the building. Make sure this location is away from glass and on the lowest floor possible. If you are in an office space with multiple floors and multiple companies, make sure you follow the buildings specific instructions if it has them. Once there, crouch down and cover your head.

Finally, if your workplace is outdoors…

Make sure employees know what’s going on with the weather. There is no recommended course of action if you are stuck outside during a tornado. Cars are an extremely dangerous place to be because tornadoes can easily pick them up and toss them. Another bad place to be is underneath a bridge. Outdoor employees should get to a building as quickly as possible.

No matter where your safe place is, remember to take the stairs not the elevator! If the power goes out, you could get trapped in the elevator shaft.

5. Have a Communication Plan

One of the most important safety tips for tornadoes is having efficient communication channels. Misinformation about weather conditions can put employees at risk. Make sure your office or workplace has a quick and easy way to disseminate emergency information. In the case of a tornado warning, an email isn’t quick enough to mobilize your business. Make sure there is an easy, unignorable method, like a loudspeaker, to ensure business safety.

6. Inform On-the-go Employees

The sixth tornado safety tip goes along with the theme of communication. If you are an energy or utility company, you more than likely have remote technicians that work outdoors. In the case of a tornado, it is imperative for these employees to receive weather updates in real-time. While notifying on-the-go employees seems like an easy task, in reality, it can prove quite difficult as weather emergencies are often chaotic and panicked. A lot of companies combat this complication by using automatic severe weather alerts like Sferic Mobile.

7. Don’t Try to Run Away from the Tornado

A common response to the threat of severe weather is for employees to go home. This is even greater if employees have family members or pets there. It’s imperative that coworkers understand the importance of staying put during tornadoes. Once NOAA issues a tornado watch, you’re already in danger. Unlike other forms of severe weather, tornadoes often change their path on a moment’s notice. Remind coworkers that one of the worst places they can possibly be during a tornado is a vehicle and make them stay put.

8. Take Photos of Damage

In the unfortunate case that your business is damaged by a tornado or any other form of severe weather, protect yourself financially by taking photos of the damage. This will make it easier when your business files a claim with insurance.

Do you have any other tips for tornado safety in the workplace? Let us know by mentioning us on social media.