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North Carolina Severe Weather Awareness Week
Mar 4th - Mar 10th, 2012

Sunday    Monday    Tuesday    Wednesday    Thursday    Friday   

This week has been declared North Carolina's Severe Weather
Awareness Week for 2012. All week long the national weather service
will be issuing informative messages to help you prepare for severe


Violent tornadoes with winds in excess of 150 mph have
struck the state as early as March and as late as November. The
worst outbreak in North Carolina history waS just last year on
April 16th, when 30 confirmed tornadoes occurred. Thirteen of these
were considered to be strong. A total of 24 individuals lost their
lives, and their were hundreds of injuries.

A tornado is a violently rotating column of air extending from a
thunderstorm to the ground. Tornadoes can occur any time of the
year. However, North Carolina's primary tornado threat occurs in the
spring from march through early june. A secondary peak occurs in
the summer, primarily associated with landfalling tropical cyclones.

Most tornado deaths and injuries across the state have occurred
outdoors, in automobiles, and mobile homes. A number of tornadoes
have struck at night. A study ranks North Carolina with the highest
percentage of fatalities from nighttime tornadoes. Since 1950, 82
percent of tornado fatalities have occurred at night even though
only 28 percent of all tornadoes touched down during this time.

When a tornado warning is issued for your area or if you spot a
tornado, seek shelter in a substantial building. The safest place
is in an interior bathroom or closet. Put as many walls between you
and the outside as possible. Stay away from windows, as flying
debris can easily shatter a window and enter your house.

If you are caught outdoors, seek shelter in a low spot like a ditch
or culvert. You want to get as low as possible to protect yourself
from the flying debris. The debris within the tornado is what
causes nearly all of the injuries and deaths. If in your car,
abandon your vehicle and seek shelter in a substantial structure or
in a ditch. Never try to outrun a tornado in a vehicle, and never
seek shelter from a tornado under an overpass. Tornadoes do not
always travel in straight lines and it can be very difficult to
determine what direction the tornado is moving.

The National Weather Service will issue tornado watches when
conditions are favorable for thunderstorms to produce tornadoes.
Once a tornado is spotted or detected by radar, the National
Weather Service will issue a tornado warning. Any time a tornado
warning is issued for your area, take action to protect your life
as well as the lives of your family.

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National Weather Service
Newport/Morehead City, NC Weather Forecast Office
533 Roberts Rd, Newport, NC 28570
(252) 223-5737
Page last modified: March 1, 2012
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