Safety During Tornadoes - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Safety During Tornadoes


If you're in the path of a tornado and in a mobile home, you need to get out. 

Experts say mobile homes are 10 to 20 times more likely to be killed in tornadoes than those in conventional homes.

From 2006 to 2011, 31% of the 823 people killed in tornadoes in the U.S. died while in or fleeing from mobile homes, even though that housing accounts for only about 8% of the nation's residences.

However... the Manufactured Housing Institute, an industry group, claims that newer mobile homes - built after 1976, when tougher federal regulations went into effect - are as safe as conventional housing.

It's a statement that not everyone is buying.

One study found that at least seven of the 14 mobile homes in which fatalities occurred were built after 1976.

The industry group also claims manufactured housing is largely found in rural and suburban areas where tornadoes are most likely to occur.

But again, meteorologists say there is no evidence to support this.

So what do you do if you live in a mobile home? 

Well, the best advice is to get out and go to a storm shelter or the lowest floor of a sturdy nearby building.

But if shelter isn't available, what can you do?  There's different advice.

The longtime, official advice was that it was better to get down in a ditch outside rather than ride out a tornado in a mobile home. 

But now some experts say you are better off taking shelter in a car or truck.  A study done in Georgia and Alabama in 1994 found cars or pickups upright with little damage...all near mobile homes where people were killed.



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