Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Opinion

March 24, 2013

Editorial - March 24, 2013: Take city up on its offer

The issue: Tornado season.

Our view: Weather radios are more reliable warning devices than tornado sirens. If you’re a Kokomo resident, pick one up at City Hall for just $9.



Folks around these parts awoke June 6, 2010, feeling fortunate. Some of our neighbors to the west and north ... not so much. Tornadoes tore through Carroll, Cass and Miami counties very early that Sunday morning. A woman suffered minor injuries after a twister flattened her mobile home near Deacon.

The worst of that storm system spared Howard County, but thunderstorms and strong winds pummeled the area. Many people slept through the whole thing.

If you did, you need to invest in a weather radio. And if you live within Kokomo’s city limits — particularly you folks in the newly annexed areas — pick one up at the City Hall welcome center for just $9. All you need to bring with you is one of the following: a valid driver’s license, a state ID card or a utility bill from the past 90 days.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration radios, like the model the city is offering Kokomo residents at a $29 discount, pick up broadcasts from the National Weather Service. Such broadcasts provide official storm warnings and watches, as well as general weather information, 24 hours a day.

Purchase one and locate it near your bed. An alarm will awaken you and advise you to take shelter if you’re in the path of a severe storm or flood.

Weather radios arguably are more reliable than tornado sirens — a horn’s blast could be difficult to hear when your windows are closed and your air conditioning is running. And they’re a necessity for those who live in a mobile home.

Some 20 million Americans live in manufactured homes, and the fatality rate for their residents during a tornado is more than 10 times that of permanent structures.

Storms, floods and tornadoes can strike any month of the year. If you’re a city resident, purchase a weather radio at City Hall, 100 S. Union St.

And if you live in the county, please consider one.

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