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 20-26 Severe Weather Awareness Week in Michigan.

There will be a statewide tornado drill March 23, 2022 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.

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

With an average of 15 tornadoes each year, this is a very real threat to our Michigan communities. This drill will give people a chance to make a plan and put it to the test. By planning now, you can be better prepared when a disaster happens.

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.

  • 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.
  • Find more tips on tornado and thunderstorm safety here.

    KEEP READING: What to do after a tornado strikes

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