FULTON, NY – The 25th annual Severe Hazards Awareness Week will be observed in Oswego County and throughout New York State April 28 through May 4.
As part of its educational campaign, Oswego County Emergency Management Acting Director Terry Bennett reminds local residents of the precautions they should take when hazardous weather conditions are predicted.
Hazardous weather can occur at any time, Bennett said. “Thunderstorms, windstorms, tornadoes, and flooding carry the potential of threatening public safety and property and disrupting normal activities,” she noted.
The county office works closely with New York State, the National Weather Service, and the local public safety community to improve the county’s readiness to respond to potentially dangerous weather situations.
In September 2007 Oswego County was recertified as a StormReady County by the National Weather Service.
The designation recognizes the multiple hazardous weather warning systems and preparedness systems in place throughout the county.
Bennett encouraged all local residents to prepare themselves by learning what to do when hazardous weather strikes, and by putting together a Family Disaster Kit with emergency supplies.
“Always be aware of your surroundings during severe weather, and listen to local weather reports before spending time outside,” she said.
As part of the statewide hazardous weather week, the National Weather Service offices serving New York State will issue test-warning messages for hazardous weather threats that develop rapidly on May 2, at approximately 1:15 p.m.
The test is being conducted in partnership with the New York State Disaster Preparedness Commission. The NWS-Buffalo Forecast Office will issue the test message for Oswego County.
The statewide drill gives public safety and preparedness officials, the broadcast media, schools, and all New Yorkers the opportunity to test plans for responding to a weather emergency.
In Oswego County, the Emergency Management Office is encouraging schools, hospitals, nursing homes, and other facilities that have tone-alert weather radios issued by the office to participate by logging their receipt of the test messages and reviewing their hazardous weather plans.
To help local residents become prepared for hazardous weather emergencies, the Oswego County Emergency Management Office offers a number of brochures on thunderstorms, tornadoes, winter storms, flooding preparedness, and general family disaster planning.
Copies of these brochures are available by calling the Emergency Management Office at 315-591-9150.
The information is also posted on the Oswego County website, www.oswegocounty.com/emo