National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

 

Severe Weather Awareness Week 2018

Introduction Daily Topics Past Events
Important Information Tornado Safety Drill Additional Info

Introduction

Governor Kay Ivey has declared February 18-23rd, 2018, as Severe Weather Awareness Week in Alabama. The National Weather Service, the Alabama Emergency Management Agency, and other supporting organizations ask for your help in providing the public with information about severe weather safety. Advance planning and increased awareness will help residents of Alabama survive these deadly storms.

Important Information

There are many aspects to being prepared for severe weather, but first and foremost, KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE!! No matter what you have in your severe weather plan, it will never be complete until you can pinpoint your location on a map. Take a few moments NOW to learn some local geography so you can be more prepared when severe weather  strikes. Don't just stop at your home location, learn surrounding counties and communities. This extra bit of knowledge will help you determine if storms in other areas are heading your way.

To help you with this, we've put together a Story Map that highlights some information about each of the 39 counties in Central Alabama. It can be found here.

Knowledge is power, a power that could SAVE YOUR LIFE!!

Story Map

 

Alabama NWS Offices Watch vs Warning Olygon Warnings Safety Plan

 

Daily Topics

Here are the general topics we will cover each day of the week. Click on images below for a larger view. Spanish versions of the graphics below can be found here.

NEW! We are proud to offer safety videos with ASL interpreting courtesy the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind, as well as captioning with each video!

 

Severe Weather Awareness Week Schedule

Mon, Feb 19

Severe Thunderstorms

Severe Thunderstorms Severe Thunderstorms Hail Safety

Tue, Feb 20

Flooding & Flash Flooding

Flood Safety Flood Types

Wed, Feb 21

Tornadoes

Tornado Safety Tornado Stats Tornado Stats

Thu, Feb 22

Lightning

Lightning Safety Lightning Safety Lightning Safety

Fri, Feb 23

Receiving Weather Alerts

Receiving Weather Alerts Weather Emergency Alerts (WEAs) NOAA Weather Radio

 

"Tornado Safety Drill" - Wednesday, February 21

In Alabama, we do not conduct a statewide tornado drill.  However, we encourage everyone to conduct their own safety drill on Wednesday, Feb 21st.  This "tornado safety drill" will be accomplished in conjunction with our weekly NOAA All-Hazards Radio Test that will be run at a special time of 9 am. An actual tornado warning WILL NOT sound, but this is an excellent opportunity for schools, civic organizations and businesses around Central Alabama to practice what they would do in the event of a tornado warning.

**Please note that some NOAA Weather Radio models do not have an audible sound for the Routine Weekly Test (they only show a flashing light).  If you are conducting a drill, please go ahead and conduct the drill even if your weather radio does not audibly alert.**

Past Events

Severe weather can happen at any time. Here are some events from the last few years:

17 Tornadoes from January 19-22, 2017:  A multi-wave severe event impacted the Southeast from January 19-22, 2017, which resulted in a total of 17 tornadoes across Central Alabama.  

Tornadoes of November 29-30, 2016:  A total of 11 tornadoes occurred over an 18 hr period beginning the evening of Nov 29th and lasting through the afternoon of Nov 30th.  

Widespread Flooding & Tornadoes of December 23-25, 2015:  Rainfall totals of 4-10+ inches fell across a good portion of Central Alabama causing widespread flash flooding and river flooding. In addition to the heavy rainfall, a total of 4 tornadoes touched down on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. 

Tornado Outbreak of April 28-29, 2014:  This was the largest tornado outbreak in Central Alabama since the infamous weather back in April 2011. A total of 18 tornadoes were confirmed in Central Alabama. 

Severe Weather & Flooding of April 6-7, 2014:  There were many reports of wind damage, but the biggest story was the flooding. Generally, 3-5 inches of rain fell across Central Alabama with locally higher amounts up to 7 inches. 

Tornadoes of April 11th, 2013:  7 tornadoes touched down in Central Alabama as a squall line and discrete supercells moved across the area during the afternoon and evening hours. 

Christmas Tornadoes of 2012:  8 tornadoes made their way through the southern counties of central Alabama.  Luckily, only 2 people were injured as this was another example of tornado touchdowns at night. 

Tornado Outbreak of January 23, 2012:  11 tornadoes touched down around central Alabama during the morning hours of January 23rd. 2 people lost their lives and 76 people were injured.

Historic Tornado Outbreak of April 27, 2011:  Two distinct waves of widespread severe weather produced a total of 29 tornadoes across Central Alabama. This was not only one of the largest tornado outbreaks in Central Alabama history, but also in U.S. history.

Tornado Outbreak of April 15, 2011:  As part of a system which wreaked havoc across the eastern half of the United States on April 14th-16th, a total of 29 tornadoes developed across Central Alabama.

For a more comprehensive list of past severe weather events, click here. 

Additional Information