Albany Assistant fire chief, Ken Turner, shares important severe weather tips


ALBANY, GA- If you didn’t know, South West Georgia has a long track record of Severe weather encounters.

With that, it is important to know the effects severe weather can bring and more importantly, what to do when they occur. Assist Fire Chief, Ken Turner with the Albany Fire Department provides important tips.

“You generally know in advance the potential for experiencing sever weather in you area, so you need to plan, prepare and practice” says Turner.

Turner says planning and preparing for severe thunderstorm and tornado weather is the most crucial here in South Georgia. Here are some tools you may not know you need in case of these emergencies.

“You want to make sure you have water for several days for each person in the house, you want to make sure you hav backup power, an example of that is a portable charger for your phones. A norther thing that’s handy to have is a whistle so if you’re trapped in your home you can use the whistle to signal for help.”

A backup generator, flashlights, spare batters, face/oxygen masks and multiple first aid kits are important to have. However, you may not know it’s advised to have many of these items stored throughout different areas of the home.

Turner says doing this allows access to aid if you are trapped in one part of the home from flooding, a tree or branch falls on your home, fire occurs or just in case of a general medical emergency.

“If you were to lose your power, you wanna make sure to turn off your breakers, but leave one light on so you know when the power is back and there isn’t a large serge of power. If you’re using a generator, make sure you’re operating it in a safe location and not inside a home.”

During severe weather, vehicular accidents are more common due to hydroplaning, flooding and impaired vision due to heavy rain.

“You often hear the analogy ‘turn around, be safe don’t drown.'” says Turner. “So if you see water crossing the road you may not know how deep it is there’s certain areas here in town where we’ve had cars get stalled numerous times trying to drive through it. Do not drive through water, its smartest to turn around and take another route.”

In Albany, the most common areas for flooding are off Dawson road, 3rd street and throughout downtown.

Turner says if hydroplaning occurs, do not stop, slam on breaks, or turn your wheels, instead slow down, turn on your hazard lights and proceed with caution, even if you are driving a large truck or SUV.