A statewide tornado drill will be held today as part of Severe Weather Awareness Week. Brad Small, senior forecaster at the National Weather Service office in metro Des Moines, says people should not go out and drive around when a tornado watch is issued. He says if you’re out in your car, you should find a safe place to stop and take shelter.It’s hoped today’s drill will help people realize they need to be prepared in case severe weather hits their area this spring and summer. Small says if a warning is issued or you spot a tornado coming at you, abandon the car and get into a ditch. He says it’s a fallacy that hiding under and overpass is the safest place. He says it’s not because debris tend to channel around the overpass.Small says Iowans should -not- try to chase tornadoes as was seen in the movie “Twister,” which was partly shot in Iowa a few years ago. He says only professionals chase tornadoes and they’re highly trained.Today’s statewide tornado drill starts with a test tornado watch being issued at 10 A-M, followed by a warning around 10:15, with the end of the drill around 10:30.
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