Ready or not it’s the springtime version of severe weather in Arkansas. An easy preparedness step is to download the official Tornado App from the American Red Cross.
KATV’s meteorologist Barry Brandt uses the station’s warning service WeatherCall 7, which calls, text and emails subscribed viewers when severe weather is in their location. He has also downloaded the Red Cross Tornado App. “I love technology, but things can happen from your internet service going down and power outages for example,” stated Brandt. “When your safety is a concern, you should have several ways to receive weather warnings like the Red Cross tornado app, WeatherCall 7 and a NOAA Weather Radio.”
The Red Cross tornado warning app puts everything you need to know to prepare for a tornado – and all that comes with it – in the palm of your hand. With interactive quizzes and simple step-by-step advice it’s never been easier to be ready.
“A great feature of the app is the very loud siren that automatically sounds, even if the app is closed when the National Oceanic Administrative Agency (NOAA) issues a tornado warning,” stated American Red Cross in Arkansas Communications Information Officer Brigette Williams. “This can be a lifesaver, since a large number of tornadoes hit communities in Arkansas at night when many people are asleep and vulnerable.” Overnight tornadoes positions Arkansas in what is called fatality alley, because of injuries and loss of life that occur when victims are sleep and unaware of approaching storms.
The Red Cross tornado app provides needed tips and information to improve your safety and well-being before, during and after severe storms. “The information is available to you even if cell towers are down,” stated Williams. The action step for before, during and after does not require mobile connectivity. Your phone does need to have battery power, so remember to power up before storms move into your area.
• Simple step-by-step instructions to help you know what-to-do even if the cell towers and TVs are down. Prioritized actions for What To Do before, during, and after require no mobile connectivity.
• Audible siren that automatically goes off even if app is closed when NOAA issues a TORNADO WARNING helping to reduce the chance of sleeping through an actual warning. Make sure your phone is on and not on silence.
• Push notification sent when a WARNING expires – especially important if power goes out while you or your family is in your safe room.
• Let loved ones know you’re safe with customizable I’m Safe notification sharable through social media, text and email.
• Let others know where you are with the Toolkit’s strobe light, flashlight and audible alert functions.
• Help friends and family in other locations stay out of harms way with your ability to receive tornado and thunderstorm watch and warning alerts based on their location set on your app from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
• Find Red Cross shelters for when you need it most.
• Be ready for emergencies by learning how to assemble an emergency kit for your family in the event of power outage or evacuation.
• Reduce your household’s stress and anxiety should a tornado hit by learning to make and practice an emergency plan.
• Instant access to all safety information at any time, even without reception or an Internet connection.
• Interactive quizzes allow you to earn badges that you can share with your friends and show off your tornado knowledge.
• Know how many tornadoes have occurred in your area.
• Know the difference between a tornado warning and a tornado alert.
• Learn how to deal with food and water impacted by floods and power outages.