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Rockdale EMA recogizes Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado siren testing to take place Thursday

CONYERS — As part of its Severe Weather Awareness Week activities, Rockdale Emergency Management Agency will be testing on Thursday mobile tornado sirens at various points around the county.

“We wanted the public to know we would be out testing the sirens Thursday afternoon so if they should hear them, they would not be alarmed,” said Lt. Chris Kozikowski with Rockdale County Fire and Rescue.

He said testing will be held from 1 to 4 p.m.

The Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security (GEMA) and the National Weather Service have set Feb. 3 to 7 as Severe Weather Awareness Week. Each day of the week is dedicated to a different severe weather event.

For example, Monday’s focus was on family preparedness and the importance of obtaining an NOAA weather radio. Tuesday was thunderstorm safety day.

Today, a statewide tornado drill will be held around 9 a.m. as part of tornado safety day.

According to the National Weather Service, tornadoes are the No. 1 severe weather-related killer in Georgia.

“The best thing to do to protect yourself and your family is to have a plan of action before a threatening tornado develops,” said Rockdale County Emergency Management Agency Director Dan Morgan.

Lightning safety and flooding will be the focus of Thursday and Friday.

More resources and information for preparing for severe weather can be found at www.ready.ga.gov. Visitors to Ready Georgia’s website can create an online profile to receive a tailored plan for the entire family that includes the specific amount of supplies to put in their household Ready kits. They can also find local emergency contact information and learn about Georgia-specific disasters.

Business owners can also refer to the Ready Your Business guide available on the site to create emergency plans for their employees.

During winter storms, floods, tornadoes or hurricanes, it may take emergency workers at least three days to reach certain areas in order to open roadways and restore utilities, according to the press release from Rockdale Emergency Management. The benefit of being self-sufficient for at least three days is that your family can survive circumstances that might otherwise be tragic, if you were not prepared.

“With a little time and effort, families can prepare for severe weather hazards affecting our area. Developing a family disaster plan is the first step,” said Morgan.