We've been pretty lucky in the last few years. We haven't seen an EF5 tornado in the United States since 2013. You're probably thinking about the Moore tornado, and you'd be right, technically... As massive as that violent wedge was, it wasn't that year. The biggest Oklahoma has ever seen happened at the end of that same month of May in 2013. It kicked up around El Reno, OK and traversed the landscape towards Yukon and the OKC metro area. Luckily, as the rural area there is somewhat bleak, there wasn't much damage to structures and such. While that seems nice and ideal, 115 people were injured and eight lost their lives. Most of them were either chasing or fleeing the storm at the time.

Now we've made it to the part of the blog, if you're still reading, that you need to re-up your tornado preparations. Oklahoma is second on the list of 'States With The Most Tornadoes,' only second to the massive land area of Texas. We also are listed second for most amount of deadly tornadoes among some other statistics.

So, what will you need?

Pack away some water. Food isn't as important, but in the worst of times, food can be lift spirits - ie - my parents kept MRE type food in our shelter and played the scary process of taking shelter off as camping. It really helped us kids, and I know it also helped them.

Store heavy and comfortable spare blankets and pillow if you have them. I've spent many nights camping out in shelters, creature comforts are king.

Hand crank radios are better to have than your cell phone. Here's why... It doesn't require a data connection, and if all hell breaks loose, odds of having data are slim. Power grids fail, towers go offline, etc... All the same, odds of that happening are small, and your cell phone is a life line. Have it and a way to charge it in case the power goes out.

Flashlights are good, but battery powered LED lanterns are better. You want to have as much light as possible in your safe space.

Before the storm hits, as soon as you get in your safe space, text someone or post that you're taking shelter on social media, say where your home is and where at in the home you are taking shelter. As soon as the storm passes, delete your personal information and give the all-clear. It's not social media narcissism, it's letting someone know where you are in case Mother Nature sweeps through your neighborhood.

Big props if you mount a small TV in your safe space. You don't need to run a connection to it either. Just get an HD-Antenna that can pull local channels out of the air. Then all you need is power for the TV.

Good luck this tornado season. Lets hope it's an uneventful one.


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