Here in New England, tornadoes aren’t the norm — but we do have occurrences, as was seen in Revere this week, along with several other sightings. There have been 162 tornadoes in Massachusetts alone since 1950, according to the National Weather Service – Boston.com has a roundup of Tornadoes of Massachusetts Past. Springfield is still recovering from the June 1, 2011 tornado, in which three were killed. And the older crowd among us may recall the horrific tornado in Worcester in 1953, which killed 93. Wikipedia has a historical roundup of Tornadoes in New England
With the rarity of events, tornadoes are not top of mind awareness for people when bad weather looms. Get the free Red Cross Tornado app to have everything you need to know to prepare for a tornado in the palm of your hand. To download: text “GETNADO” to 90999 or search “Red Cross Tornado” in the Apple App Store or Google Play.
Some of the app features include:
- Step-by-step instructions to help you know what-to-do even if the cell towers and TVs are down. Prioritized actions for before, during, and after requires no mobile connectivity.
- Audible siren that automatically goes off even if app is closed when NOAA issues a TORNADO WARNING helping to reduce the chance of sleeping through an actual warning.
- Push notification sent when a WARNING expires – especially important if power goes out while you or your family are in your safe room.
- Info on how to assemble an emergency kit for your family in the event of power outage or evacuation and how to make an emergency plan.
- Info on the difference between a tornado warning and a tornado alert.
- Red Cross location-based open shelters map for when you need it most.
- Learn how to deal with food and water impacted by floods and power outages.
- Let others know where you are with the Toolkit’s strobe light, flashlight and audible alert functions.