Michigan’s annual statewide tornado drill to be held today: What to know

Severe Weather Awareness Week in Michigan is this week in Michigan

With severe weather season right around the corner, the annual Michigan statewide tornado drill will be held during Michigan Severe Weather Awareness Week to help Michiganders test their severe weather readiness plans before spring severe weather arrives in Michigan.

The National Weather Service will use NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards to participate in the Michigan statewide Tornado Drill on Wednesday, March 22, 2023. Around 1 p.m., the National Weather Service will use their Routine Weekly Test on NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards to be an active participant in the statewide tornado drill.

These drills through the Routine Weekly Test will cover all counties in Michigan and will originate from the National Weather Service Forecast Offices at Grand Rapids, Gaylord, Marquette, Detroit/Pontiac and Northern Indiana. Persons are urged to practice their tornado safety measures during the drill.

The statewide tornado drill is being conducted in conjunction with Severe Weather Awareness Week in Michigan which runs March 19- 25, 2023.

With severe weather season right around the corner, here are some severe weather safety tips to keep you and your family safe from the National Weather Service:

Watches and warnings

Tornado watch: Conditions are right for tornadoes to form. This is where you will monitor severe weather information from WDIV Local 4 News as well as other outlets for more information.

Tornado warning: A tornado has been spotted by a trained observer or detected on Doppler Radar. Take action immediately.

Tornado Safety Tips

At home

  • Go to the basement, under the stairs or under a heavy piece of furniture like a table or workbench.
  • Get under heavy furniture, and cover your head with blankets or pillows. The biggest threat of death or injury comes from head injuries caused by flying or falling debris.
  • Keep windows closed and stay away from them.

In school

  • Go to the lowest floor or basement.
  • Get to interior rooms or hallways and protect your head
  • Stay out of gymnasiums and auditoriums.
  • In public buildings: Go to a designated shelter, an interior hallway or a small room on the lowest floor.
  • Stay away from windows.
  • Do not go to your car.

In open country

  • Move away from a tornado at right angles.
  • If a tornado is near, DO NOT try to outrun it.
  • Get out of your car, lie flat in a ditch or depression.
  • Stay away from large trees or metal poles. Cover your head.

In mobile homes

  • Leave your mobile home immediately
  • If there is no designated community shelter, take cover in a ditch or depression.
  • Persons in mobile homes should have a plan of action before threatening weather occurs.

About the Author:

Bryan became a permanent member of the 4Warn Weather Team in March 2023 after coming to Local 4 in May 2022 as a freelance meteorologist.