Are you ready for severe weather? With recent tornadoes and other inclement weather, it makes you wonder just how prepared you are.  Living near the coast, obviously we need to be aware especially during hurricane season. Victoria has been pretty lucky in recent years, but why press your luck? The Federal Emergency Management Agency and the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration have made this week National Severe Weather Preparedness Week through Saturday, April 28th.

"With the tornadoes that struck the Dallas-Fort Worth area earlier this month, and the deadly twisters that spanned the Midwest just days ago, we know the very real risk of severe weather," said FEMA Region 6 Deputy Administrator Tony Robinson. "Because severe weather knows no boundaries and affects every individual, we're calling on people to 'be a force of nature' in their communities to prepare for severe weather."

Know Your Risk: The first step to becoming weather-ready is to understand the type of hazardous weather that can affect where you live and work and how the weather could impact you and your family. Check the weather forecast regularly, obtain a NOAA Weather Radio and sign up for localized alerts from emergency management officials. Severe weather comes in many forms and your shelter plan should include all types of local hazards.

Take Action: "Be a Force of Nature" by taking the pledge to prepare at Ready.gov/severe-weather. When you pledge to prepare, you will take the first step to making sure that you and your family are prepared for severe weather.  This includes developing a family communication plan, putting an emergency kit together, keeping important papers and valuables in a safe place and getting involved.

Be an Example: Share your story with your family and friends. Create a YouTube video, post your story on Facebook, comment on a blog or send a tweet.

More ideas on how you can "Be a Force of Nature" - plus information on the different types of severe weather - can be found online at www.weather.gov , www.ready.gov or the Spanish-language web site www.listo.gov.

Locally, you can visit the City of Victoria Office of Emergency Management website for information during severe weather, or see their list of links with other information.