Preparedness

Damaging Winds

damaging winds

  • Don’t underestimate the power of strong thunderstorm winds known as straight-line winds – they can reach speeds of 100 to 150 mph.
  • When dense rained-cooled air reaches the surface it spreads out horizontally with the leading edged of the cool air forming a gust front.
  • The gust front marks the boundary of a sharp temperature decrease and increase in wind speed.
  • Be aware of any trees around you during a thunderstorm, and if outside, don't take cover under a tree, because trees can fall over and are often struck by lightning. 
  • Be aware and stay tuned to the National Weather Service Northern Indiana for any updates on changing weather conditions and the latest information on storms and where they are heading
  • After damaging winds occur be careful going outside and watch out for falling tree limbs and stay away from downed power lines.

 

gust front diagram

Earthquakes

 quake


 

 

 

 

 


Earthquakes are sudden, violent shaking of the earth's crust. They are caused when the earth's tectonic plates move, rub, collide, or break apart. Earthquakes aren't predictable so the best practice is to always be prepared.

 

Before an Earthquake:

  • Put larger objects on lower shelves and lighter ones on the top.
  • Learn how to turn off water, gas, and electricity to your home.
  • If possible, have walls, chimney's, shelves, and hanging items more securely reinforced.
  • Bolt the hot water heater to studs in your walls.

During an Earthquake:

  • Get under a large, sturdy piece of furniture and hang onto it because you both can move during an earthquake. Cover your head with your arms - Be ready for aftershocks.
  • If you are outside stay away from power lines, tall buildings, or anything that could possibly fall on you.
  • If you are in a car, drive slowly to a clear location. Make sure nothing is around that could possibly fall on you, and remain in the car.

After an Earthquake:

  • Check for injuries and care for seriously injured.
  • Listen to radio or TV for further instructions.
  • If you hear a hissing or a gas leak noise, turn off main gas. Leave house immediately.
  • Put out small fires if there are any.
  • Check home for damage.
  • Do NOT re-enter house if it has structural damage.

"Stuff You Need To Know"

Flood

Foster Park Flood Wall

 

A flood is caused by heavy rain, which leads to rising river waters. This rise in water can lead to extreme damage, injury, or loss of life. Flooding is the deadliest natural disaster in America. 

Monitor local river forecasts here: http://water.weather.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=iwx

 Basic Tips

  • Turn Around, Don’t Drown! ®
  • Avoid walking or driving through flood waters.
  • Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and 2 feet of water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • If there is a chance of flash flooding, move immediately to higher ground. Flash floods are the #1 cause of weather-related deaths in the US.
  • If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. Do not leave the car and enter moving water.

Roadway

After

  • Return home only when authorities say it is safe.
  • Be aware of areas where floodwaters have receded and watch out for debris. Floodwaters often erode roads and walkways.
  • Do not attempt to drive through areas that are still flooded.
  • Avoid standing water as it may be electrically charged from underground or downed power lines.
  • Photograph damage to your property for insurance purposes.

Flood Combo

 

Extreme Heat

 

Ground and Heat Outlook

Warning and Advisory

Death by heat exhaustion is one of the top weather related killers. Know the signs of heat exhaustion and be prepared if the temperatures begin to soar!

Heat Tips

Indoor Water Conservation Tips Before a Drought

GENERAL

  • Never pour water down the drain when there may be another use for it. For example, use it to water your indoor plants or garden.
  • Repair dripping faucets by replacing washers. One drop per second wastes 2,700 gallons of water per year.
  • Check all plumbing for leaks and have any leaks repaired by a plumber.
  • Retrofit all household faucets by installing aerators with flow restrictors.
  • Install an instant hot water heater on your sink.
  • Insulate your water pipes to reduce heat loss and prevent them from breaking.
  • Install a water-softening system only when the minerals in the water would damage your pipes. Turn the softener off while on vacation.
  • Choose appliances that are more energy and water efficient.

BATHROOM

  • Consider purchasing a low-volume toilet that uses less than half the water of older models. Note: In many areas, low-volume units are required by law.
  • Install a toilet displacement device to cut down on the amount of water needed to flush. Place a one-gallon plastic jug of water into the tank to displace toilet flow (do not use a brick, it may dissolve and loose pieces may cause damage to the internal parts). Be sure installation does not interfere with the operating parts.
  • Replace your showerhead with an ultra-low-flow version.

KITCHEN

  • Start a compost pile as an alternate method of disposing of food waste or simply dispose of food in the garbage. (Kitchen sink disposals require a lot of water to operate properly).

hot

Outdoor Water Conservation Tips Before a Drought

GENERAL

  • Check your well pump periodically. If the automatic pump turns on and off while water is not being used, you have a leak.
  • Plant native and/or drought-tolerant grasses, ground covers, shrubs, and trees. Once established, plants adapted to your local climate do not need water as frequently and usually will survive a dry period without watering. Small plants require less water to become established. Group plants together based on similar water needs.
  • Install irrigation devices that are the most water efficient for each use, such as micro and drip irrigation, and soaker hoses.
  • Use mulch to retain moisture in the soil. Mulch also helps control weeds that compete with landscape plants for water.
  • Avoid purchasing recreational water toys that require a constant stream of water.
  • Avoid installing ornamental water features (such as fountains) unless they use re-circulated water.
  • Consider rainwater harvesting where practical.
  • Contact your local water provider for information and assistance.

LAWN CARE

  • Position sprinklers so water lands on the lawn and shrubs and not on paved areas.
  • Repair sprinklers that spray a fine mist. Most misting issues result from a pressure problem, properly regulating pressure in an irrigation system will prevent misting.
  • Check sprinkler systems and timing devices regularly to be sure they operate properly.
  • Raise the lawn mower blade to at least three inches or to its highest level. A higher cut encourages grass roots to grow deeper, shades the root system, and holds soil moisture.
  • Plant drought-resistant lawn seed. Reduce or eliminate lawn areas that are not used frequently.
  • Avoid over-fertilizing your lawn. Applying fertilizer increases the need for water. Apply fertilizers that contain slow-release, water-insoluble forms of nitrogen.
  • Choose a water-efficient irrigation system such as drip irrigation for your trees, shrubs, and flowers.
  • Turn irrigation down in fall and off in winter. Water manually in winter only if needed.
  • Put a layer of mulch around trees and plants to reduce evaporation and keep the soil cool. Organic mulch also improves the soil and prevents weeds.
  • Invest in a weather-based irrigation controller—or a smart controller. These devices will automatically adjust the watering time and frequency based on soil moisture, rain, wind, and evaporation and transpiration rates. Check with your local water agency to see if there is a rebate available for the purchase of a smart controller.

POOL

  • Install a new water-saving pool filter. A single back flushing with a traditional filter uses 180 to 250 gallons of water.
  • Cover pools and spas to reduce evaporation of water.

Indoor Water Conservation Tips While in a Drought

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BATHROOM

  • Avoid flushing the toilet unnecessarily. Dispose of tissues, insects, and other similar waste in the trash rather than the toilet.
  • Avoid taking baths—take short showers—turn on water only to get wet and lather and then again to rinse off.
  • Avoid letting the water run while brushing your teeth, washing your face or shaving.
  • Place a bucket in the shower to catch excess water for watering plants.

KITCHEN

  • Operate automatic dishwashers only when they are fully loaded. Use the "light wash" feature, if available, to use less water.
  • Hand wash dishes by filling two containers—one with soapy water and the other with rinse water containing a small amount of chlorine bleach.
  • Clean vegetables in a pan filled with water rather than running water from the tap.
  • Store drinking water in the refrigerator. Do not let the tap run while you are waiting for water to cool.
  • Avoid wasting water waiting for it to get hot. Capture it for other uses such as plant watering or heat it on the stove or in a microwave.
  • Avoid rinsing dishes before placing them in the dishwasher; just remove large particles of food. (Most dishwashers can clean soiled dishes very well, so dishes do not have to be rinsed before washing)
  • Avoid using running water to thaw meat or other frozen foods. Defrost food overnight in the refrigerator or use the defrost setting on your microwave oven.

LAUNDRY

  • Operate automatic clothes washers only when they are fully loaded or set the water level for the size of your load.

Outdoor Water Conservation Tips While in a Drought

 CAR WASHING

  • Use a commercial car wash that recycles water.
  • If you wash your own car, use a shut-off nozzle that can be adjusted down to a fine spray on your hose.

 LAWN CARE

  • Avoid over watering your lawn and water only when needed:
  • A heavy rain eliminates the need for watering for up to two weeks. Most of the year, lawns only need one inch of water per week.
  • Check the soil moisture levels with a soil probe, spade or large screwdriver. You don't need to water if the soil is still moist. If your grass springs back when you step on it, it doesn't need water yet.
  • If your lawn does require watering, do so early in the morning or later in the evening, when temperatures are cooler.
  • Check your sprinkler system frequently and adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk, or street.
  • Water in several short sessions rather than one long one, in order for your lawn to better absorb moisture and avoid runoff.
  • Use a broom or blower instead of a hose to clean leaves and other debris from your driveway or sidewalk.
  • Avoid leaving sprinklers or hoses unattended. A garden hose can pour out 600 gallons or more in only a few hours.
  • In extreme drought, allow lawns to die in favor of preserving trees and large shrubs.

 

heat index

Hail

hail

  • Hail is precipitation that is formed when updrafts in thunderstorms carry raindrops upward into extremely cold areas of the atmosphere. Hail can damage aircraft, homes and cars, and can be deadly to livestock and people.
  • The strength of the updraft corresponds to the size of the hail. The stronger the updraft, the longer the ice particles can be suspended in the cloud. When the hailstones become too heavy for the updraft to keep airborne, they fall down to the ground.
  • Some thunderstorms can produce large hail stones that can reach the size of baseballs, softballs, or even as big as computer compact discs (CD)! These large hail stones can fall at speeds over 100 mph! – that’s why they are dangerous!
  • If caught outside during a hailstorm, get under a sturdy structure right away! If you are in a large open area, cover your head to avoid injury.

 

 

how does hail form