Minnesota Weather Threats - Anytime, Anywhere Last year, Minnesota experienced 113 tornadoes, with a total of 48 on a single day in June. In 1998, however, it was only March when 13 tornadoes struck in St. Peter and Comfrey. Historically, springtime is flood season in our state — but in 2010, late September brought more than 10 inches of rain that inundated southeastern Minnesota. In addition to these unpredictable threats, our survival can depend on our response to thunderstorms, straight-line wind, lightning, hail and extreme heat, as well.
“Nobody really expects the weather to threaten their lives,” says Kris Eide, director of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM). “We like to think it will happen to someone else, somewhere else. But dangerous weather doesn’t discriminate. Awareness and preparedness are our only defenses.”
In real weather emergencies, Minnesotans can turn to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio broadcasts for watches, warnings and forecasts around the clock. NOAA radio is particularly important for anyone who needs extra time to react to bad weather.
More lifesaving information can be found on the Severe Weather Awareness Week Web site at www.severeweather.state.mn.us. Links to the American Red Cross, the Minnesota Safety Council, the National Weather Service and others provide learning materials for businesses, individuals, families and children.
The site contains information on weather watches and warnings, thunderstorms, hail, lightning, flash floods, tornadoes and heat waves, along with instructions on how to make a survival kit, develop a plan to shelter or escape, and avoid surprises by staying informed of weather conditions. Many materials are downloadable for use in homes, businesses and classrooms.