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Severe Weather Awareness Week April 24-28

For Immediate Release: Friday, April 21, 2017

Contact:  Tony Mangan, Department of Public Safety, 773-6196


Severe Weather Awareness Week April 24-28 

PIERRE, S.D. – South Dakotans are being urged to start preparing now for the inevitable severe weather that will occur this spring and summer in South Dakota.


Next week, April 24-28,  has been designated as Severe Weather Awareness Week in South Dakota. Officials say this is a good time to start thinking about what to do when severe thunderstorms or tornadoes impact the state.


“We never want severe weather, but unfortunately it does happen,” says Tina Titze, director of the South Dakota Office of Emergency Management. “Severe weather occurs in South Dakota and everybody needs to be ready just in case.”


State and local officials will spend the week encouraging people to start making preparations now. Several counties throughout the week are holding severe weather preparedness meetings for their weather spotters and the public.


“When severe weather hits, it is then too late to make preparations,” says Titze. “Now is the time when individuals and families should discuss what to do in times of severe weather.”


A statewide tornado drill will be held Wednesday, April 26. The test watch is scheduled for 10 a.m. CDT (9 a.m. MDT) with the warning issued at 10:15 a.m. CDT (9:15 a.m. MDT). 


In most communities on Wednesday, severe weather sirens will be sounded. People are reminded that it is only a test unless otherwise announced.


For more information on how to be ready for severe weather, click onto the Office of Emergency Management’s Severe Weather Preparedness Guide at  http://dps.sd.gov/documents/SEVERE%20WEATHER%20GUIDE.pdf.


Also new this year is the Office of Emergency Management’s mascot, Tommy the Turtle, who narrates three different children’s books about severe weather preparation. For more information on the books, click onto http://dps.sd.gov/emergency_services/emergency_management/.


The Office of Emergency Management is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.