EUGENE, Ore. – The second day of the National Weather Service’s Severe Weather Awareness week focuses on tornado safety. On average two to three tornadoes occur in Oregon every year.
Most of the tornadoes in the Pacific Northwest are less intense than those in other parts of the country. Their strongest winds are between 40 mph to 157 mph, rated EF0 to EF2 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale.
Tornadoes are most common in July and August, but have been reported in every month of the year.
The NWS’s Storm Prediction Center issues a Tornado Watch when conditions are favorable for storms to produce tornadoes. At this time people should review their safety plans in case severe weather threatens.
The NWS issues at Tornado Warning when a tornado is detected by Doppler radar or a trained weather spotter.
If a Tornado Warning is issued, the best place to go is the basement or an interior room on the lowest floor, such as closed or bathroom. The best safety position is to crouch down and cover your head.
For those in a car, the best option is to drive to the nearest shelter. If that’s not possible, occupants should buckle their seatbelts and bend down, below the window level, and cover their heads.
If a tornado is spotted and a person is outside, they should run to the nearest shelter. If there is no shelter available, they should lie flat on the ground to prevent getting hit from flying debris.
You can find more information here.