Go to storm shelter or social distance?

Should you go to a public storm shelter or continue to practice social distancing?

Posted: Apr 10, 2020 3:41 PM
Updated: Apr 22, 2020 3:38 PM

JACKSON, Miss. (WTVA) - Severe weather is possible Wednesday night, April 22 and Thursday morning, April 23.

Open this link for severe weather coverage.

Should you go to a public storm shelter or continue to practice social distancing?

The National Weather Service provided the following advice on April 9.

This spring, the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), the Mississippi State Department of Health, (MSDH), and the National Weather Service (NWS) are offering the following guidance for how to take shelter from severe weather during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The need to practice social distancing and prevent the spread of COVID-19 brings added complications to taking shelter from severe weather. However, state and federal officials agree that your top priority should be to protect yourself from a potential tornado.

Officials recommend sheltering from tornadoes inside your home when possible. If you don't have a below-ground storm shelter, well-constructed homes and buildings provide life-saving protection from many of Mississippi's tornadoes. Take shelter in a closet, bathroom, interior hallway or other interior room with no windows on the lowest level of the house or building. For mobile home residents, you should abandon the mobile home in favor of a sturdy building during severe weather. This alternative structure should be a part of a severe weather plan that is identified well in advance.

If your family typically takes refuge in a public storm shelter in your community, first check with your community shelter managers to ensure they will still be open and if there are any special considerations to plan for due to COVID-19.

Now is the time to explore the best options to keep you safe from severe weather as well as limit your exposure to the virus. Don't wait until a tornado warning is issued to make a plan.

Wherever you choose to shelter from a tornado: take as many precautions as possible to inhibit the spread of COVID-19 as best as you can, continue social distancing, and frequent handwashing.

The best way to prepare for severe weather during a pandemic is to stay informed of the latest weather forecast from the NWS and local media: as well as the latest recommendations regarding COVID-19 from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the Mississippi State Department of Health, and local authorities.

Open this link for a list of local storm shelters.

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Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 35419

Reported Deaths: 1230
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds290851
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Madison144638
Jones120349
Harrison113616
Rankin108715
Neshoba104577
Forrest99343
Lauderdale96381
Scott81915
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Washington72213
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Wayne56218
Yazoo5536
Lowndes54813
Lamar5347
Leflore53156
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Pike49920
Lafayette4974
Sunflower4778
Monroe45635
Panola4486
Covington4355
Bolivar40518
Simpson3933
Attala38424
Newton37510
Tate35213
Adams35120
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Marion32712
Claiborne30111
Chickasaw29719
Winston29511
Pearl River28832
Noxubee2788
Jasper2776
Marshall2773
Walthall2627
Clay25811
Union25211
Smith24612
Clarke22325
Coahoma2226
Lawrence2092
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Tallahatchie1954
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Calhoun1645
Humphreys16310
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Tippah14511
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Tunica1233
Jefferson Davis1204
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Amite1103
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Perry874
Choctaw754
Stone742
Franklin542
Sharkey480
Benton460
Issaquena101
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 49892

Reported Deaths: 1077
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson6433170
Mobile4753139
Montgomery4430112
Tuscaloosa263253
Madison21199
Marshall192611
Shelby164225
Lee157237
Morgan12695
Baldwin120711
Walker106131
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Dallas9969
Etowah95114
DeKalb9417
Franklin93216
Autauga67614
Russell6750
Chambers67427
Unassigned65328
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Limestone6223
Houston5857
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Lauderdale5686
St. Clair5133
Colbert4956
Calhoun4905
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Escambia4808
Pike4725
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Jackson4182
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Dale3911
Talladega3897
Bullock37710
Marengo35211
Hale34823
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Clarke3126
Wilcox3038
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Winston2965
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Pickens2696
Randolph2589
Monroe2553
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Conecuh2308
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Greene1959
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Washington1418
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