Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Burlington, VT

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NOUS41 KBTV 030900

500 AM EDT WED MAY 3 2017

...Severe Weather Awareness Week in New England and New York...

The National Weather Service, along with all the New England states

and the state of New York, have proclaimed the week of May 1st

through May 5th as Severe Weather Awareness Week. Today, we look

at severe thunderstorms and tornadoes.

The number of days with thunderstorms across Vermont and northern

New York ranges from 20 to 30 days with nearly a third of these

days experiencing severe weather.

A severe thunderstorm can produce damaging winds in excess of 58

miles an hour, large hail of 1 inch in diameter or larger, or even

a tornado. Heavy rain which may cause flooding and deadly lightning

are also likely hazards in a severe thunderstorm.

The National Weather Service issues a severe thunderstorm watch when

conditions are favorable for the development of severe thunderstorms.

The National Weather Service issues a severe thunderstorm warning by

county when radar indicates a severe thunderstorm or when severe

weather is reported by spotters or local officials.

Tornadoes are a rare phenomena across the north country, with an

average of one tornado occurrence per year. A tornado is a violent

windstorm characterized by a twisting, funnel-shaped cloud.

Tornado damage is classified by the enhanced fujita scale ranging

from relatively little damage (EF0) to catastrophic damage (EF5).

Violent tornadoes (EF3 or greater) are capable of great destruction

and loss of life. Tornadoes fill the air with lethal, wind borne

debris, such objects as sticks, glass and lawn furniture become

deadly missiles when driven by tornadic winds.

A tornado watch means that meteorological conditions exist for the

possible formation of tornadoes in your area.

A tornado warning means a tornado has been spotted or has been

indicated by radar.

When a severe thunderstorm or tornado watch has been issued, you

should make preparations and be alert for approaching storms. Secure

all loose objects such as lawn furniture and other yard equipment.

These items may become dangerous projectiles during the storm.

Have an emergency first aid kit available, including a battery

operated NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio with tone alert

capabilities. It is one of the quickest and most reliable ways to

receive severe weather information.

When a severe thunderstorm or tornado warning has been issued act

quickly, but do not panic.

At home, go to the basement or find a windowless interior room on

the lowest floor, like a closet or bathroom. Remember, mobile homes

are not considered safe indoor shelters, you should seek substantial

shelter elsewhere.

In schools, hospitals, factories and shopping centers go to a

predesignated shelter. If an underground shelter is not available,

go to an interior small room or hallway on the lowest floor and get

under a sturdy piece of furniture. Stay away from large open rooms

with windows such as auditoriums and gymnasiums.

If caught outdoors and no shelter is available, find a ditch or low

spot and stay crouched low to the ground, protecting your head. Do

not lie flat on the ground. If on a boat, head for safe harbor and

find safe shelter immediately.

Stay informed and be alert, if threatening weather is in the area.

Remember, severe thunderstorms can develop quickly giving you little

time to react to the danger. If a thunderstorm approaches you, take

the necessary precautions to protect yourself.

More information on severe weather as well as forecasts and other

weather information can be found at Also,

visit our NWS Burlington Facebook and Twitter sites for more


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