During the month of March the Joplin Police Dept. and the Joplin/Jasper County Emergency Management offer tips on severe weather Preparedness. Be advised that a State Tornado Drill will take place on Tuesday, Mar. 13, 2012, at 1:30 p.m. with a postponement date of March 15 at the same time, if needed. Regular testing will take place the first and third Monday morning of each month (weather permitting) at 10 a.m. for ONLY ONE MINUTE (as compared to the three minute warning when weather is threatening). To get people's attention, a second siren will sound if the first warning was made more than 10 minutes prior to the arrival of the storm. Remember that a tornado watch means that a tornado may form during a thunderstorm; so, watch the sky. A tornado warning means to seek shelter immediately in the lowest floor possible, and, if no basement is available, in an interior space without windows. Do not seek shelter in a cafeteria, gym or other large open space because of a potential roof collapse. Immediately leave a mobile home. Do not seek shelter under an overpass on the highway because you could be sucked out due to a wind tunnel effect. Instead find a suitable building or a ditch. Do not drive into standing water unless you flirt with drowning. Outdoor warning sirens will be activated when the NWS issues a tornado warning for Jasper, Newton or Cherokee counties with a storm path including the city of Joplin or when receiving a report from a trained spotter of a funnel or tornado sighted in or approaching Joplin. Outdoor warning sirens also will be activated when the NWS reports a storm system approaching Joplin producing sustained winds of 75 mph or greater. NO "all clear" siren will be sounded. All non-test sirens mean danger is imminent!
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