University of Kentucky
SEVERE WEATHER GUIDE

This guide for severe weather and tornado safety are prepared by the University of Kentucky, Department of Environmental Health and Safety, Fire Marshal's Office as suggested SEVERE WEATHER SAFETY GUIDELINES.

SEVERE WEATHER DEFINITIONS

Tornado...
A violently rotating column of air produced by a thunderstorm and in contact with the ground.
Severe Thunderstorm...
A thunderstorm with winds of 58mph or more and/or hail with a diameter of 3/4" or more.
Tornado Watch...
Tornadoes and severe thunderstorms are possible.
Tornado Warning...
Tornado detected; Take shelter immediately.
How to recognize a tornado...
Usually a funnel-shaped cloud, spinning rapidly, and extending toward the earth from the base of a thundercloud.
TORNADO SAFETY RULES
  1. Read and become familiar with the University of Kentucky policy on emergency situations.
  2. In the event of a tornado, follow the emergency procedures developed for your specific work situation.
  3. Follow the general guidelines below as a general safety guide.
IN A VEHICLE...
  • Do not try to out-run a tornado. If available, take shelter in a nearby sturdy building. Otherwise, get in the nearest ditch or depression until the tornado passes.
IN EDUCATIONAL BUILDINGS...
  • Go to a predesignated shelter area if available, otherwise seek shelter on the lowest floor of a building of reinforced construction.
  • Stay inside, away from all doors, windows and outside walls.
  • Avoid large auditoriums and gymnasiums with large poorly supported roofs.
IN PORTABLE OFFICES...
  • Mobile or portable offices, even with tie downs, are no match for a tornado. Seek shelter in a more substantial building or lie flat in a ditch or depression.
IN OPEN COUNTRY...
  • Move away from the tornado's path at a right angle. If ther is no time to escape, lie flat in the nearest ditch or depression away from trees and power poles.
IN DORMS, AND RESIDENTIAL HOUSING...
  • Getting under heavy furniture in the basement usually offers the greatest safety.
  • Keep away from doors, windows and outside walls.
  • Keep away from objects that may fall. PROTECT YOUR HEAD!
IN OFFICE BUILDINGS...
  • Get in an interior hallway on a lower floor, preferably a basement.
  • Avoid north-south hallways.
  • Keep away from doors, windows and outside walls.
EMERGENCY KITS
  • It may be helpful to prepare for yourself kits that should include the following:
    • Flashlight
    • AM Radio (Battery Powered)
    • First Aid Supplies
    • Important Phone Numbers; your emergency contact, University of Kentucky Emergency Numbers, family numbers.
PHONE NUMBERS
  • University of Kentucky Emergency Number: 911
  • University of Kentucky, Environmental Health ans Safety: 257-3241
  • University of Kentucky Fire Marshal: 257-6326
  • University of Kentucky Police: 257-1616

source: Federal Emergency Management Association and Kentucky Disaster and Emergency Services

Fire Marshal