The month of March has already brought severe weather to many parts of Missouri. In light of our upcoming Severe Weather Awareness Week and a recent storms with tornado activity, the Missouri Primary Care Association wants to help you prevent storm-related injuries by reminding you of the following:
If your residence should ever be damaged by severe storm activity, the Red Cross advises that you:
Wear protective clothing, including long pants, a long-sleeved shirt and sturdy shoes and be cautious.
Visit the Red Cross website to learn more about how to clean up after a tornado, including the supplies you’ll need and how to handle fire hazards such as gas, electricity and chemicals.
Don’t just repair your home, build in tornado-resistant features to help protect against future damage.
Strengthen existing garage doors to improve wind resistance, particularly double-wide garage doors.
If your home has been significantly damaged and will require reconstruction interventions, consider also building a safe room.
Additionally, for CHCs or social agencies that operate Homeless Outreach programs, the Health
Resources Services Administration (HRSA) maintains an on-line collection of Public Service Bulletins about surviving severe weather when you’re living outdoors. Here are some recommendations:
To protect yourself from tornado activity:
Take shelter in the closest public building, if possible.
Stay on the lowest level (a basement is best, especially in abandoned buildings).
Go to the center of the room, away from any windows, doors, and corners.
Get under a sturdy table and use your arms to protect your head and neck.
If you can’t get indoors, lie flat in a nearby ditch or depression and cover your head with your hands. Don’t get in a ditch if it is near water, because it could flood.
Do NOT get under an overpass or bridge—these become wind tunnels, and you can be sucked out.
Stay out of cars, trucks, and other vehicles.
Watch out for flying debris.
Missouri’s Community Health Centers provide medical, dental, behavioral health services and in many cases, homeless outreach. These clinics are open to all residents, regardless of insurance status or ability to pay. Check out the Missouri Primary Care Association website to find a Community Health Center near you.