Storm and Emergency Guide for Kids
If you have ever been in a storm, you know that they're pretty scary! A storm can be loud and dark, and sometimes, they seem like they'll never end. When a storm gets really bad, it can be an emergency situation. In an emergency, you could easily get hurt. Most of the time, a parent, teacher, or guardian is there to keep kids safe. But if you know what to do, you can be super-helpful in keeping yourself and your family safe. How can a kid do that? By knowing what you need and what you should do during a storm. For instance, there are certain things that you'll need to have during any type of storm. You can help your parents create an emergency kit that has these things inside. Blankets, a flashlight, batteries, and a radio that runs on batteries are some of the things that should go inside of an emergency kit.
A hurricane is a type of storm that is very dangerous. This type of storm has very fast winds that are strong enough to send heavy things flying through the air. Hurricanes also cause areas to flood with water. Flooding in places that are near water happens because of high waves. In areas away from the water, flooding happens because of rain. Stay safe during a hurricane by staying inside and away from windows. Families that live near water may have to leave their homes and stay in a shelter that is safer. This is called an evacuation. If you are outside and away from home, find a building with sturdy walls and get inside. You must stay inside until the storm has finished and it is safe to go outside again.
Thunderstorms are very loud, and the lightning can be pretty scary, even for grownups! When there are thunderstorms, you want to be someplace that is safe from lightning. Lightning is more than just a bright light: It's a form of electricity, and it can seriously hurt or even kill anyone it hits. Just like in other types of storms, it's important to stay inside during a thunderstorm and away from windows and doors. Don't watch TV or play with anything electrical until the storm is over. You also shouldn't take a bath or wash your hands during this type of storm. If you're playing outside, go indoors. If there isn't a house nearby, stay away from trees, the tops of hills, open fields, and water. Don't touch anything metal, including your bike.
- Weather Wiz Kids: Hurricanes
- Thunderstorms and Lightning (PDF)
- Billy, Maria, and the Thunderstorm (PDF)
Tornadoes are one of the most dangerous types of storms. They come from thunderstorms and are cone-shaped when they come down from the sky. Tornadoes are so dangerous that they destroy homes and can lift up heavy objects, even cars! Before a tornado, you'll hear a warning siren or alarm. When that happens, get inside of your house and into the basement with your family. Some buildings don't have basements, but that doesn't mean you can't be safe. Go to the center of the house where there are no windows. Crawl under a table and cover your head with your arms. Don't stay in a mobile home, in a car, or under a bridge: It isn't safe. If you are stuck outside and have no place to go, find a low spot on the ground. Lie as flat as you can. Put your hands over your head, and don't move. After the tornado is over, be careful! Broken glass and sharp objects will be on the ground and can hurt you. If you are outside and see a power line that has fallen down, stay far away from it.
During a blizzard, the air is freezing cold, and it snows a lot. There is so much snow and wind that it can be hard to see! This type of storm is so cold that it can cause damage to people's fingers, toes, and even your nose. Sometimes, the damage is so bad that people can lose the damaged part. This is called frostbite, and it can happen if you are out in a blizzard for too long. Blizzards make the roads dangerous for people to drive on, and they can damage your home. During a blizzard, the most important thing is to stay warm. Don't go outside, and ask your parents to light a fire in the fireplace, if you have one, to help keep the house warm. But be careful: Fireplaces can be dangerous, so don't play around them or get too close. If you know a blizzard is coming, ask your parents to buy more food and water. It might be difficult getting to and from the stores once the storm hits, or they might be closed.
Flooding happens in many severe storms. If you get caught in flood water, you can drown. Flood water can also be dirty with garbage, chemicals, and other things that can make you sick or kill you. Because of that, it's important to never play in or around flood water. Kids should not walk through the water after a flood, either. If there is a risk of flooding, let your family know that there has been a flood warning and go to a higher place.
By: Steven Moore