(Richland County, WI) – Schools, businesses, families, and individuals have two opportunities to test their emergency plans during statewide tornado drills on April 20, 2017. The drills are part of the annual spring severe weather campaign to encourage everyone in Wisconsin to be ready for possible tornadoes and severe weather.
Governor Walker has declared April 17-21, 2017 as Wisconsin’s Tornado & Severe Weather Awareness Week. Wisconsin Emergency Management, the National Weather Service (NWS) and the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association (WBA) have once again teamed up to sponsor the statewide tornado drills scheduled for Thursday, April 20.
On April 20th, a mock tornado watch will be issued at 1:00 p.m. followed by a statewide mock tornado warning at 1:45 p.m. WRCO Radio and TV stations across the state will issue the test tornado warnings. Tornado sirens in communities across the county will also be tested as a part of the mock tornado drill.
In addition, mock alerts will be issued on NOAA Weather Radios and many communities will sound their tornado sirens to test their emergency severe weather plans. Later, a mock tornado warning will be issued at 6:45 p.m. to give families and second shift workers a chance to practice their emergency plans.
According to the NWS, Wisconsin averages 23 tornadoes annually. Last year, there were 16 tornado touchdowns in the state. All of the tornadoes were either an EF0 or EF1. However, it’s not a question of if we will have a violent storm, it’s a matter of when.
The tornado drill will take place even if the sky is cloudy, dark and or rainy. If actual severe storms are expected in the state on Thursday, April 20, the tornado drills will be postponed until Friday, April 21 with the same times. If severe storms are possible Friday, the drills will be cancelled.
Any changes will be issued to local media as well as the following sites:
Richland County Emergency Management website at https://em.co.richland.wi.us
ReadyWisconsin website at http://readywisconsin.wi.gov.
Winter storm to bring several inches of snow to the region Friday through Saturday, blowing and drifting some of that snow on Saturday. There will be significant impacts to travel over the period. Plan now for winter driving conditions and consider altering travel plans to avoid peak snow and wind hazards. After the storm moves through, another shot of cold air will hit the area. Wind chills Sunday morning could range from 25 to 45 below zero.
Richland County, WI: Richland County Emergency Management states areas of Richland County have been greatly affected by nine inches of rain in the last 24 hours; causing both Richland County and The City of Richland Center to declare a state of emergency. Many roads are closed and more will continue to close as more rain falls and the water levels continue to rise. Public safety officials do not encourage people to travel unless absolutely necessary. No dollar amount is available for damages at this time.
Individuals may call (608)649-5766 to obtain information about road closures and alternative routes.
Individuals who have suffered damage to their primary resident and wish to report it may call (608)649-5767. Richland County Public Health in coordination with the American Red Cross is obtaining flood clean-up kits; a limited number are currently available at the community center in Richland Center at 1050 North Orange Street, Richland Center, WI, 53581. More flood clean-up kits have been requested for distribution, Richland County Public Health will announce when they have arrived for public distribution. The Wisconsin Flood Tool Kit is on the county website at http://co.richland.wi.us. The website provides valuable information and resources.
Individuals who have questions regarding wells or any other flood concerns may call (608)649-5752 to speak to the public health representative in the Emergency Operation Center.
From the Office of the Mayor of Richland Center and Richland County Board Chair
The flood water is rising fast. A declaration of a State of Emergency had been made for Richland County and the City of Richland Center. Later in the day movement around the county may become dangerous. Emergency Officials are encouraging all businesses to send employees home while there are still some passable roads.
A Shelter will be set up at the Community Center. For Life Safety issues call 911, for all other questions or concerns regarding flooding please call the following numbers:
To Report Road Issues or to obtain Alternative Routes: 608-649-5766
Damage Assessment: 608-649-5767
Public Health: 608-649-5752