Spring officially begins on Saturday, March 20. Along with warmer weather and longer days, spring often brings strong storms to Tennessee. Here are some tips from the American Red Cross to help your family be better prepared for spring weather.

Make a Plan

Develop a plan to help your family respond to disasters. Discuss how to prepare and respond to emergencies that are most likely to happen where you live, learn, work and play. Identify responsibilities for each member of your household and plan to work together as a team. Know where you and your family will shelter during severe weather. Identify a basement, storm shelter or an inner hallway or closet that can provide protection during storms.

Get Educated

Know the difference between storm watches and warnings. A watch means that bad weather is possible. A warning means that bad weather is occurring, and you should seek shelter. Conditions following a storm can be hazardous. Stay away from downed power lines and call your local co-op or 911.

Have a Kit

Take time now to organize the basic supplies you will need during a disaster. Basic kits should include food, water, medicine, a flashlight, battery powered radio and extra batteries, first aid kit, medicine, cell phone and charger. A full list of items to include in your kit can be found at redcross.org.

Prepare for Power Outages

Despite our best efforts, strong storms can create extended power outages. Battery-operated flashlights and lanterns can provide light and are safer than candles. Keep your refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. If you plan to use a generator, have an electrician properly install it to keep you, your family and first responders safe.

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