Spring Season Brings Chances for Hazardous Weather in Maryland
April 8-14 is Severe Storms Awareness Week
REISTERSTOWN, Md. (April 9, 2018) — Although it doesn’t quite feel like spring yet, now is the time to begin thinking about the upcoming severe storms season. This is Severe Storms Awareness Week, and the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) is teaming up with the National Weather Service and local emergency managers to promote citizen awareness
During spring, Maryland is at risk for heavy rainstorms, flooding, damaging winds, tornadoes, hail and lightning. All of these hazards typically occur throughout the state; however, residents can “be weather prepared” by ensuring that they know how to receive warnings and practice safety tips.
“Severe Storms Awareness Week is a chance to highlight dangerous weather that often occurs in Maryland,” said Russ Strickland, Executive Director of MEMA. “This is the time to plan for what you or your family should do in case of a severe weather warning. Get to a safe space, then communicate with your neighbors, friends and family to make sure they’re aware of the situation and are safe.”
The National Weather Service agrees with that assessment. “Maryland frequently experiences severe storms during the spring,” said NWS Warning Coordination Meteorologist Christopher Strong. “Damaging winds and flooding are the primary threats, but we also see hailstorms and tornadoes of various intensity.”
The National Weather Service and MEMA work closely together and with local emergency managers and other government agencies to identify and monitor severe weather systems, develop preparedness plans and safety information and coordinate the response to these storms.
- Now is the time for residents to prepare for severe storms by taking the following actions:
During flooding, never enter an area where water is flowing over a road and you cannot see the pavement. Turn around, don’t drown!
- If a severe thunderstorm warning is issued or you are experiencing strong winds, get to a sturdy shelter and stay indoors away from windows.
- Tornadoes can form rapidly in the right conditions. If there is a tornado warning or you see a tornado, quickly get inside and go to the lowest floor possible.
- If you hear thunder, you are close enough to be struck from a fringe lightning strike. More than 98% of lightning fatalities are from people outdoors—get indoors or inside your vehicle if possible.
Download the Maryland Prepares app to your portable device to receive alerts of severe weather along with other handy features. Additional information can be found on the “Weather Ready” website at weather.gov/lwx/weatherready and the MEMA website at mema.maryland.gov.