Spring means storms in Michigan and state officials want to make sure we're prepared for severe weather.

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Michigan's Severe Weather Awareness Week and Statewide Tornado Drill

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has declared March 19-25 Severe Weather Awareness Week in Michigan.

There will be a voluntary statewide tornado drill March 22, 2023 at 1p.m. Businesses, organizations, families, and individuals are encouraged to participate. Nearly all state of Michigan facilities will participate.

Some cities will have sirens sound. You may also see or hear alerts on NOAA Weather Radios and on the radio or TV.

State officials say they hope the tornado drill begins a broader conversation about emergency preparedness.

Michigan averages about 15 tornadoes a year.

Col. Joe Gasper, state director of Emergency Management and Homeland Security and director of the Michigan State Police said in a release,

We are approaching the anniversary of the deadlyEF3 tornado that devastated the city of Gaylord last year. It serves as an important reminder to take steps now to prepare and create a plan to protect your home, your family, and your pets.”

Signs of a Tornado

Michigan.gov lists these signs to watch for, indicating a potential tornado:

    • Dark, often greenish sky
    • Large hail
    • A large, dark, low-lying cloud (particularly if rotating)
    • Loud roar, similar to a freight train.
    • If you see approaching storms or any of the danger signs, be prepared to take shelter immediately.

How to Prepare for a Tornado

The state of Michigan shares the below tips to be ready for a tornado:

  • Know the difference: Tornado Watch means conditions exist for a tornado to develop; Tornado Warning means a tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar.
  • Know the signs of an approaching tornado: dark, often greenish sky; large hail; a large, dark low-lying cloud; and loud roar, like a freight train.
  • Develop an emergency preparedness kit with essential items such as a three-day supply of water and food, a NOAA Weather Radio, important family documents and items that satisfy unique family needs.
  • Conduct regular tornado drills. Make sure each household member knows where to go and what to do in the event of a tornado.
  • here.

    See Pictures From the Tornado That Devastated Gaylord, Michigan

    A rare tornado ripped through the small Northern Michigan town of Gaylord on Friday. The twister left at least one person dead, more than 40 injured, and a trail of destruction to property.

    KEEP READING: What to do after a tornado strikes

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