No matter where you are, you must be able to receive warnings or at least be able to recognize the danger signs that something bad is about to happen.
Use a NOAA Weather Radio, television, commercial radio, outdoor warning sirens, scanners (to monitor local storm spotters), the Internet, pagers/cell phones/PDAs to update yourself on warnings. Use as many methods as possible to make sure you know what is happening.
However, you may not see or hear any of these visual clues if the tornado is wrapped in heavy rain, or if it is too dark to see. This is what makes preparedness and warnings so critical. People have ignored tornado warnings because they looked outside and did not see the classic black funnel-shaped tornado. Dangerous, destructive tornadoes are often masked by a veil of heavy rain.
You are ultimately responsible for your safety and the safety of your family. You should execute your tornado safety plan whenever you feel threatened - it does not matter whether there's a warning or not. Tornadoes can develop very quickly, and not every one will be preceded by a warning. The actions you take and the seconds you spend taking shelter could mean the difference between life and death.
All warning information is available free of charge and specific to your county via the National Weather Service Weather Radio Network, as well as the Internet. In addition, we provide this information directly to broadcasters, who use the information to inform the public via TV and radio stations.
Warnings are issued for counties, so know what county you're in and those around you. This is particularly critical if you're traveling through unfamiliar areas.
Most people get their weather information by watching television. But, how will know you're being threatened if you're not watching a local television station, the electrical power goes out, the station does not interrupt its broadcast, or you're watching a DVD or video tape?
What if you're asleep? What if you aren't in your home - at a sporting event, at work, camping, etc? You cannot have a television with you at all times of the day.
The good news is you can be alerted to dangerous weather conditions no matter what you're watching, or where you are, with a Weather Radio. Visit the NWS Norman's Weather Radio page for more information.