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Tornado siren test: It's Severe Weather Awareness week in Missouri

Here are some things to do now to prepare for dangerous storms.

ST. LOUIS — Dealing with severe weather is part of living in the Midwest. This week, the National Weather Service is reminding people to have a plan with annual Severe Weather Preparedness Week.

The sirens were scheduled to be tested around the state at 10 a.m. Tuesday, March 8, 2022.

It's rare when St. Louis weather is quiet, but it will be for the next few days. Calm conditions are ideal to get your ducks in a row for the next time severe weather hits. 

Here is a checklist for preparing for severe weather:

  • Make a list of outdoor items to bring inside before the next storm. 
  • Get a weather radio. If you have one already, refresh the batteries. 
  • Find a friend or neighbor to touch base with when the weather gets rough. 
  • Study the lingo:
    • When the National Weather Service issues a watch, that means the ingredients are out there for a severe storm to develop. A warning is when severe weather has been spotted and you need to take action.
  • Go over your insurance policies.

Brennen Sowa as a State Farm insurance agent based in Florissant.

"Wind and hail are the two of the biggest claims we see in the Midwest," he noted, adding that most standard home policies do not include coverage for wind or hail damage.

Sowa recommended double checking your coverage now before we're in the thick of severe weather season.

"Some people don't realize their deductible could be thousands of dollars whenever a wind or hail storm damages their home," Sowa said.

Heavy rain often comes along with severe weather, so you'll want to make sure your home is covered for that too. Sowa advises his clients to opt into sewer and drain policies if they have basements or areas prone to flooding.

For more tips on preparing for severe weather visit the StormAware website.

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