This week, the Collingwood area was caught up in some severe storms that caused significant damage in and around the area. With high winds (up to 115km/h), hail and severe rain, the area was pelted by these storms and with it brought down trees, power lines and damage to buildings. The roof of Mr. Transmission was ripped right off during the storm on Monday, but luckily no one was hurt.
How can you protect yourself?
This time of year is notorious for storms like tornados, caused by the drastic changes in temperature that are common of the fall season in Ontario. While many people love storms and their resulting beauty in the sky, they can be dangerous, so it is best if you can protect your home and property before and during a storm (and even after).
When the weather changes, you are best to take shelter immediately, especially if there are lightning strikes or tornado warnings. The building with which you take shelter should be one with ground plumbing and electrical systems and not something like a shed or stand-alone public washroom, which are often damaged during these large storms. Bring your pets in as well, as a doghouse isn’t sufficient protection against a storm.
While you are in the structure, keep away from all windows and don’t touch anything electrical. Concrete even has the ability to conduct electricity, so don’t lean or lay on it either. While many believe bathtubs are the place to go in a tornado, during an electrical storm you want to stay out of the water.
If you are in a vehicle (which is not the best choice), don’t touch any part of the metal frame or the glass.
If you can’t find shelter, go to a low-lying elevation and avoid open spaces. Never go under a tree or light post either. Again, you want to stay out of the water, as it is very dangerous during a lightning storm. If you have items with you, move away from them and move away from any people you are near.
There are some great resources in Ontario that will help you prepare for approaching storms. Ontario Tornado Watch has a Facebook page and an app, which will alert you to storms that may hit your area. If the weather suddenly changes, you might want to check their page or app (once you are in a safe location). If you don’t have access to technology, use the formulas to calculate the distance from the storm.
Have a safe spot in your home to go in the case of a tornado or other severe storm and have it packed with an emergency kit and other supplies. You should also have some supplies ready for if your power is out for a few days. Some ideas include a generator, a few days’ worth of food and water and flashlights with working batteries.
Stay safe Collingwood!