Even though northcentral Wisconsin is not considered part of "tornado alley", the area certainly is prone to devastating severe weather, such as the record-setting 12 tornado outbreak in early April 2011, and the significant tornado, hail, and wind event of June 2005.
Hopefully by now everyone has a plan for what to do at home when severe weather threatens. Most schools and government offices and facilities have safety plans which include regular drills to prepare for threatening weather conditions. Yet there are many organizations, civic groups, and businesses which do not have contingencies in place for these possible dangerous situations.
We are all aware of the damage tornadoes and severe thunderstorms can bring to neighborhoods and communities, yet we often become complacent as to whether such horrible events will ever impact us directly, especially when we are away from our homes. Many businesses, churches and other civic organizations do not have a plan of action in the event of severe weather.
On July 13, 2004, a tornado rumbled across portions of northern Illinois, including the Roanoke area. The powerful twister demolished the Parson's Manufacturing Plant. But amazingly, none of the 150 employees at the plant were injured. This was due to a Severe Weather Safety Plan that was understood and followed by the employees. Photos of the plant are included below.
There are four important components of a Severe Weather Safety Plan: