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The original item was published from 3/15/2021 4:46:42 PM to 3/18/2021 12:00:04 AM.

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Posted on: March 15, 2021

[ARCHIVED] Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill Set for March 16th

Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill - March 16 2021

Virginia’s annual Statewide Tornado Drill will take place Tuesday, March 16, 2021, at 9:45 a.m. Goochland County encourages all citizens to take part in this important annual drill.

As part of the drill this year Goochland will be testing our CodeRED emergency alert system.  Individuals in the County will receive a test notification via phone call, email, and text message.  Everyone who lives or works in Goochland is urged to register for Goochland’s CodeRED emergency alert system; this system is used to communicate about emergencies and other critical community notifications including road closures, etc. Individuals can sign up to receive alerts and notifications via phone, text message, or email.  There is also an option to opt-in to receive weather alerts.

For more information and to sign up visit: https://public.coderedweb.com/CNE/en-US/1380BACA5A57.  Citizens can also enroll by texting GOOCHLANDALERTS to 99411.

Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill

Tornadoes can occur any month of the year.  Over the last decade, Virginia has averaged 24 tornadoes per year.  In 2019, 19 confirmed tornadoes touched down throughout the Commonwealth impacting 21 different jurisdictions, including a number of Goochland’s neighboring localities.

The National Weather Service and The Virginia Department of Emergency Management have scheduled the 2021 Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill for Tuesday, March 16 at 9:45 a.m. If widespread severe weather threatens the Commonwealth on that date, the drill will be rescheduled for Wednesday, March 17, at 9:45 a.m.

The annual Statewide Tornado Drill is an opportunity to prepare Virginians for tornado threats and to test public warning systems.

The drill will start at approximately 9:45 a.m. with a test tornado warning sent in the form of a Required Monthly Test by the National Weather Service to National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) weather radios and local broadcasters.

Since this year’s drill will use the required monthly test, most NOAA weather radios will NOT automatically sound an alert tone alert. For those participating in the drill, including schools and businesses, turn on your NOAA Weather Radio by 9:40 am and listen to the voice broadcast. Those listening to the broadcast will hear the audible test alert broadcast at 9:45 am. Local radio stations, TV stations and cable outlets will also broadcast the test message via the Emergency Alert System (EAS). Information and resources are available at https://www.weather.gov/akq/SevereWeatherAwareness.

Tornadoes have occurred in every month of the year but are most likely from April through September. Have a plan, know your location and surroundings and have a way to receive Watches and Warnings from the National Weather Service. Check to see if your smartphone is set to receive Wireless Emergency Alerts. When a tornado watch is issued for your area, review your plan and know where to seek safe shelter when a tornado warning is issued.

What is a tornado?

A tornado is a violently rotating column of air that extends from the clouds to the ground and is often, although not always, visible as a funnel cloud. Lightening and hail are common in storms that produce tornadoes. 

Tornadoes may strike quickly, with little to no warning, causing extensive damage to structures and disrupting transportation, power, water, gas, communications and other services in its direct path and in neighboring areas.

VDEM - Tornado Watch and Warning

TORNADO WATCH - BE AWARE

Tornadoes are possible. Move close to a shelter or sturdy building in case there is a warning.

TORNADO WARNING – TAKE ACTION

A tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar. Take shelter immediately.

For more information about tornado preparedness, visit vaemergency.gov/tornadoes.  For a printable guide on tornado preparedness, please visit https://www.vaemergency.gov/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/VDEM_Publication_Tornadoes.pdf

Goochland's CodeRED Emergency Alert System

Everyone who lives or works in Goochland is urged to register for Goochland’s CodeRED emergency alert system. This system is used by Goochland County to communicate with citizens during emergencies and other critical community situations.  The system also allows citizens to opt in to receive National Weather Service (NWS) alerts automatically when a weather event (flood, tornado, etc.) is triggered in a targeted area of the County.  For more information and to sign up visit: https://public.coderedweb.com/CNE/en-US/1380BACA5A57.  

Citizens can also enroll by texting GOOCHLANDALERTS to 99411.

Tornado Resources

Virginia Department of Emergency Management – Tornado Safety Tips & Preparedness Guide

https://www.vaemergency.gov/tornadoes/ 

Virginia Department of Emergency Management – Tornado Preparedness Guide 

https://www.vaemergency.gov/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/VDEM_Publication_Tornadoes.pdf 

Ready.Gov Tornado Safety Tips

https://www.ready.gov/tornadoes

National Weather Service – Tornado Safety Tips

https://www.weather.gov/safety/tornado

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