MEMA provides safety tips for severe weather awareness week

MISSISSIPPI (WCBI) – No one knows when a disaster may strike, but being prepared is the key to protecting yourself. Malary White, the Chief Communications Officer for the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, said covering you and your family can start with having a simple plan of action.

“It does not matter if you are from north Mississippi or south Mississippi or somewhere in between. You need to have a plan in place of what you would do during severe weather,” said White.

White said she knows firsthand just how important a plan for severe weather can be.

“I will be quite honest with you. My family was a victim of that mentality. We did not think that Hurricane Katrina was going to affect us the way that it did because of where we lived. It can happen to you. We were three weeks without power and that is very hard when you are dealing with triple-digit heat. So, it can happen to you, and you need to take the precautions now,” said White.

WCBI Chief Meteorologist Isaac Williams said there are a few things you should not do during bad weather.

“Severe weather can happen on a dime around here and things can get bad very quickly. You never want to be in a car during severe weather; you never want to be in a mobile home during severe weather. And you certainly do not want to be close to windows. You always want to be away from windows,” said Williams.

White said having accurate information, preferably from more than one source, should also be a big priority.

“People need to have multiple ways to receive weather alerts and notifications. Information is key before, during, and after a disaster, and they can do that in many ways. They can watch their favorite meteorologist on television, and they can download a trusted weather app. And we have the MEMA app where you can customize your weather alert,” said White.

White said you should also have a plan for your pets before severe weather strikes.

And, of course, one way to stay informed is to get the WCBI App. It’s available for iPhone or Android.

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