Severe thunderstorms can be stressful, and even more so when the phrases “Tornado Watch” and “Tornado Warning” are being thrown around. One of the most common worries that I see from people in areas with tornado threats is whether you can safely go to sleep when severe weather surrounds your home.
Luckily, the Tornado app has a helpful tool that lets you monitor any number of locations for warnings and alerts. It can cause your phone to emit an alarm sound when you are in an area with a tornado warning (remember, WARNING means that a tornado may be imminent and you must seek shelter immediately).
Here’s a quick step-by-step guide to setting your phone up to alert you. Download the app (for iPhone or Android) by clicking here.
1. Open the Red Cross Tornado app on your phone. You will see the screen on the right.
2. Select the Tornadoes button on the bottom navigation menu. You’ll see the Alerts screen.
3. Select the Locations Monitored field and follow the directions on the next screen to search for your zip code and add any locations you want the app to track.
4. Go back to the Manage Alerts screen and hit Alert Settings. Enable notifications and sounds. Make sure your phone’s volume is turned up and that it is not set to “silent mode”.
5. Go back to the main Tornadoes screen and hit “What alerts will I get?” for more information. You can also check out the Weather Map to see the latest radar map.
6. That’s it! Tornado warning alarms will sound on your phone even if the app is closed.
Get your rest while the storms are passing through, but go to bed with your phone nearby and with a pair of sturdy shoes and a flashlight by your bed!