According to Weather.gov, there are quite a few myths people believe about severe weather.
Myth: Highway overpasses are a safe place to find shelter from a tornado.
Fact: Actually…the overpasses can concentrate the tornado winds. That means hiding under one would put you in a much more dangerous situation. Being above ground level during a tornado is a bad idea.
Myth: Open the windows in your building during a tornado; the low pressure associated with a tornado will cause the building to explode otherwise.
Fact: If you attempt to equalize pressure by opening the windows, it will have no effect. In fact, stay away from your windows and seek a safe place inside if there is a tornado. Every second counts!
Myth: Storms and tornadoes always move from west to east.
Fact: Quite often, thunderstorms do move from west to east. However, it’s the atmospheric conditions that dictate how and where storms will move. Storm movements can be erratic, so don’t assume you’re safe during severe weather!
Myth: If it’s not raining, you’re safe from lightning.
Fact: Lightning can strike many miles away from a thunderstorm. Even if the skies are clear, it’s possible to experience lightning strikes (although these strikes 10-15 miles away are rare).
Myth: I am protected from lightning strikes if I’m inside a building or home.
Fact: Taking shelter does not completely protect you from lightning. Avoid using electrical appliances, your home telephone, and do not take showers or baths. Also, stay away from doors and windows during a storm. They can act as lightning conductors and pose a threat.
Myth: Large, heavy vehicles (e.g., an SUV) can drive through flood waters.
Fact: Absolutely not! It only takes two feet of water to float a vehicle…even an SUV or pick-up truck.
Myth: Flash floods only occur along flowing streams.
Fact: Flash floods can actually occur almost anywhere — dry creek beds, urban areas, or areas where no rivers or streams are present.
This is just a casual reminder that Mother Nature can be intensely dangerous.
Protect yourself and your loved ones from storms this season by knowing the facts!
Don’t feel silly for seeking shelter during bad weather — it could save your life.