Brace for torrential rains, possible tornados Tuesday

Published 12:00 pm Monday, March 21, 2022

Residents of Lincoln County and surrounding counties should brace for heavy rains, hail and tornados Tuesday and Tuesday night.

“All modes of severe weather are likely, including strong tornados,” said Lincoln County Emergency Management Director Chris Reid. “A flood watch begins at 7 a.m. We’re in the moderate risk area, which is 70 mph winds, hail up to golf ball size and tornados likely. Two to four inches of rain, with higher amounts possible.”

The National Weather Service in Jackson predicts the strongest part of the weather system will move through Lincoln and Lawrence counties between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.

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An emergency safe room will open at 10 a.m. in the Brookhaven Building, 1100 Industrial Park Road. Nothing will be provided. Pets are not permitted.

Residents should also prepare for the possibility of power outages. In addition to making sure generators are ready and flashlights are working and easily located, precautions should be taken regarding stored foods.

The United States Department of Agriculture recommends the following:

  • During a power outage, the refrigerator will keep food at a safe temperature — below 40 degrees — for up to four hours. A full freezer will hold a safe temperature for approximately 48 hours, or 24 hours if it is half full. Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed to prevent cold air from escaping.
  • Keep an appliance thermometer in both freezers and refrigerators in the event temperatures need to be checked.
  • Freeze water in small plastic storage bags or containers prior to a storm. These are small enough to fit around food to help keep temperatures low.
  • Freeze refrigerated items you may not need immediately — such as leftovers, milk, fresh meat and poultry.
  • Consider getting additional ice if a lengthy power outage is possible.
  • Group foods together in the freezer to create an “igloo” effect, helping the food stay cold longer.
  • Keep a few days’ worth of ready-to-eat foods that do not require cooling or cooking.

For questions about food safety, call the Meat and Poultry Hotline at 888-674-6854 Monday-Friday 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.

If your property receives damage from the storms, be sure to take photographs and document damage prior to contacting insurance providers.