Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management
Situation Update 1
April 13, 2012 7 p.m.
STATE EOC ACTIVATED DUE TO SEVERE WEATHER
Due to severe weather conditions across Oklahoma, the State Emergency Operations Center has activated. The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management (OEM) is in contact with emergency managers across the state and coordinating with the Oklahoma National Guard, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Department of Human Services, Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security, Oklahoma Department of Transportation, National Weather Service, American Red Cross and Salvation Army.
Severe thunderstorms will continue the mid-evening hours, primarily across central and southwest Oklahoma. These storms are part of a storm system, which is developing over the western U.S. Storms should end by late Friday. Another round of storms is expected on Saturday across much of Oklahoma. The tornado threat will be present again on Saturday with any sustained thunderstorms.
Norman Emergency Management reports damage to power lines and power poles as well as damage to some businesses, homes and an apartment complex. City Hall has sustained damage as well.
Oklahoma State Department of Health reports 6 minor injuries at Norman Regional Hospital.
A shelter for residents displaced by the storm is now open at Whittier Recreation Center at 2000 West Brooks in Norman.
Oklahoma Corporation Commission reports about 9,780 outages related to the storm including the following.
Norman - 4,111
OKC/Norman border area – 1,554
Spencer - 75
Oklahoma City Central - 83
Oklahoma City North - 457
Oklahoma City West - 101
Piedmont - 432
Oklahoma Electric Cooperative estimates an additional 2,967 customers in Norman.
WEATHER SAFETY TIPS
Keeping informed about the weather is the best way to avoid being caught in a tornado or severe thunderstorm. A battery operated NOAA Weather Radio with a warning alarm feature should be a part of your information system!
It’s also critical that you think about tornado safety before there’s a storm on the horizon, and plan what you will do to stay safe no matter where you may be when storms threaten. Remember these basic guidelines:
GET IN - get as far inside a strong building as you can, away from doors and windows
GET DOWN - get to the lowest floor
COVER UP - use whatever you can to protect yourself from flying or falling debris
- A reinforced underground storm shelter, storm cellar, enclosed basement or safe room are usually the safest places in a tornado. Underground shelters get you out of the way of flying and falling debris, which is a tornado’s most lethal weapon.
- If you cannot get underground, remember the basic guidelines. Get as far inside the strongest building you can find. Stay away from doors, windows and other openings to the outside. Put as many walls between you and the outside as you can.
- Get as low as you can. Go to the lowest floor of the building you’re in.
- Cover up to protect yourself from flying and falling debris. Use whatever you can. Find pillows, blankets, sleeping bags, mattresses. Wearing a helmet or hardhat will help protect your head from debris.
- Being outdoors, in a mobile home, or in a vehicle are all unsafe in a tornado or severe thunderstorm. Find stronger shelter before the storm arrives and remember to get in, get down and cover up.
For Oklahoma residents seeking non-emergency disaster or health and human service information, please contact your local 2-1-1. Services are available 24 hours a day by dialing 2-1-1 from your home or cellular telephone. Please only call 911 for emergencies.
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