BE PREPARED: Countywide tornado drill is Wednesday for Severe Weather Preparedness Week

Published 12:44 pm Monday, October 17, 2022

NATCHEZ — Gov. Tate Reeves has declared Oct. 17 through 22 Fall Severe Weather Preparedness Week.

“When it comes to a severe storm, preparation could be the difference between life and death,” Reeves said. “I encourage you to dedicate a time this week to learn how to better prepare your family in order to keep them safe.”

Adams County officials are making sure the county is prepared with a countywide tornado drill scheduled for this Wednesday, Oct. 19, during which sirens will be tested and area schools may conduct drills. Darryl Smith, the volunteer fire coordinator, said sirens would go off at approximately 9:15 a.m. Wednesday. Those located near the sirens at that time can call 601-442-7021 to let the Adams County Emergency Management office know if they’re working, he said.

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Mississippi experienced 76 tornados that touched down in 2021. The state usually sees significant storms during this secondary severe weather season November-December.

In February 2021, snow and ice hit Mississippi, closing down the city of Jackson, and causing multiple power outages and boil-water alerts across the state.

“Mississippi can see multiple types of extreme weather during the fall and winter months,” said Mississippi Emergency Management Agency Executive Director Stephen McCraney. “Prepare by checking insurance policies, building a disaster supply kit, and reviewing emergency plans with your family.”

To promote severe weather preparedness, MEMA is partnering with the National Weather Service and the Mississippi Department of Transportation to highlight different types of hazards and ways to prepare ahead of the upcoming severe weather season.

Each day of Preparedness Week, MEMA will share messages on particular topics on its social media pages. Those topics are:

  • Monday, Oct. 17 — Warning reception methods
  • Tuesday, Oct. 18 — Severe thunderstorms
  • Wednesday, Oct. 19 — Tornado safety. Weather permitting, a 9:15 a.m. statewide tornado drill will be conducted.
  • Thursday, Oct. 20 — Flash flooding
  • Friday, Oct. 21 — Snow and ice
  • Saturday, Oct. 22 — Mobile home safety

Volunteer firefighters also have fire training earlier this week at the Adams County Safe Room, Smith said. His department is now taking names of those who need smoke alarms that will soon be handed out to county residents, he said.

“We haven’t got them in yet. Once they come in, we’ll start putting them out to residents,” Smith said at Monday’s meeting of the Adams County Board of Supervisors.

For more information on Severe Weather Preparedness or to read the governor’s proclamation, visit MSEMA.org.

Stay informed of severe weather alerts, drills and community announcements by signing up for Code RED alerts on the Adams County website. Visit www.adamscountyms.net/emergency-management and click on the Code RED logo to sign up.