Emergency responders: Have a safety plan in case of severe weather

By Madeline Anderson
KAKE – April 7, 2015


Cleanup around KAKEland from last Friday’s storm may be almost complete but we won’t be in the clear for long. More severe weather is expected to roll through this week.

Much of the destruction mother nature causes is out of our control. But staying safe when a storm hits, Newton’s Deputy Fire Chief Scott Metzler says is our responsibility.

“We want people to come up with a severe weather safety plan. So just like a fire drill, this is where we like to have people identify places of refuge, safe places to go when there’s severe weather. Which could be a basement, it could be their neighbors’ home, it could be a nearby relatives’ home,” Metzler said.

Metzler says part of being prepared ahead of time also means having the necessary items to survive up to several days without electricity.

Ace Hardware’s store manager encourages shoppers to stock up on flashlights or lanterns, extra batteries, bottled water, blankets and even a small generator.

“At a time of panic is not when you should try to find the items that you need,” said Wayne Butterfield.

Out on the roads, Metzler says drivers also need to be prepared when they encounter severe weather safety hazards.

“It only takes a few inches to displace a person walking, especially if that water is moving,” Metzler said. “Ten to 12 in. of moving water will displace a car. Anything over that is profoundly dangerous.”

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