The warnings were in place. From the warning times I saw I figured I had 3 hours. The preparation began to survive this band of storms coming. Living in the country 15-20 miles from the nearest shelter without adequate transportation made it necessary to act quickly. I knew I would need the common stuff like water and food to survive but this was my first real threat of a tornado.
The area schools had dismissed early and parents called one another to warn of the coming storms. A plan had to be developed. While I waited for the kids to get off the school bus I set to cooking dinner as soon the electric may go out. Not knowing how long it may be out,I set out many candles and filled both bathtubs with water to aid in flushing the toilets. I gathered and filled all the jugs I could find with clean drinking water.
Next I had to find a safe plan to ride out a tornado if it should touch down here.
I live in a double wide trailer with no real foundation. With no basement I knew I had to find a safe place for my 3 kids ages 17, 14, & 9. I knew from the radio and television I needed to find a room with no windows if possible. I have a closet in my bedroom that is in the center of the house and not against an outer wall. I got the idea to hold up in the closet if necessary.
I took the dangerous objects out of my closet and began to set up a small retreat. In the closet I placed a battery operated radio and a flashlight. I also charged my cell phone and placed it on the shelves against the back wall. After the closet was ready I closed it up and waited for the kids to get home.
We went outside and picked up any loose objects from the lawn that could be dangerous and stored it in the garage. We disconnected the propane tank and again put it in a secure place. All patio furniture was folded up and placed in the garage for safe keeping.
I fed the family supper early and discussed the plan I had developed. We retired into the living room to watch the weather channel. We calmly explained to our kids where on the weather map we were located and what the different colors meant. My youngest son began to get scared. On the news it was showing a local school that had been hit by a tornado where several people were trapped inside and many had died.
The fear built as the sirens began to sound off and the radio blurted to go to our safe place now. As we sat in the closet the sounds outside were terrifying. The radio however, helped us concentrate on listening and avoid panicking. We used the cell phone to keep in communication with other family members. It really did help to prepare for this band of angry storms. The storms did kill several people, but this time, we were safe.