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Northwest Missouri State University


News Release

March 8, 2011

Northwest to participate in statewide tornado drill Thursday

Helpful tips: 

  • Tornado Watch means tornadoes are possible. Remain alert for approaching storms. Watch the sky and stay tuned to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio, or television for information.
  • Tornado Warning means a tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar. Take shelter immediately.
  • An interior room without windows on the lowest floor is the safest shelter location.
  • Do not seek shelter in a cafeteria, gymnasium or other large open room because the roof might collapse.
  • Immediately leave a mobile home to seek shelter in a nearby building.
  • If you are driving, you should stop and take shelter in a nearby building.
  • Overpasses are not safe. An overpass' under-the-girder-type construction can cause a dangerous wind tunnel effect. In some cases bridges have collapsed, killing and injuring those who are seeking shelter underneath them.
  • If you are driving in a rural area and spot a tornado, driving away from the tornado's path may be the safest option if the tornado is far away. If the tornado is bearing down on you, stop your vehicle off the traveled section of the roadway and seek a sturdy shelter or lie flat in a ditch or other low spot. If you are outside, cover your head with your arms, a coat or blanket to protect yourself from flying debris. Be prepared to move quickly in case the ditch fills with water. Also, remember that stopping near the roadway increases the chance of being struck by other motorists-so be alert and exercise caution.
  • MARYVILLE, Mo. - Northwest Missouri State University, along with the National Weather Service, the State Emergency Management Agency and local emergency management offices, will participate in the annual state tornado drill Thursday, March 10 at 1:30 p.m., as part of Missouri Severe Weather Awareness Week, which runs from March 7-11.

    "The state tornado drill is important because it reminds all of us to plan for weather emergencies that are a common threat across Missouri," said State Emergency Management Agency Director Paul D. Parmenter. "The drill provides a designated time for schools, businesses and others to practice taking shelter when a tornado warning is issued."

    According to the National Weather Service, Missouri experienced 65 tornadoes in 2010, including multiple tornadoes on Dec. 31, which were responsible for five deaths and 13 injuries. Four of the five people killed were in mobile homes when the tornadoes struck.

    When Northwest students and employees hear broadcast drill messages or outdoor warning sirens, they should practice seeking shelter. The safest shelter location is an interior room without windows in the lowest level of a building. Severe weather procedures are posted prominently in campus offices and throughout each building on the Northwest campus.

    The entire drill is expected to last about 15 minutes.


    For more information, please contact:

    Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
    mhorn@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

    Northwest Missouri State University
    215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468