MADISON, Miss. (WJTV) – People across the state have already seen tornadoes this year but during Severe Weather Preparedness Week, it is all about making sure everyone is ready the next time one hits.
“They take it very seriously, the teachers do. They know that this is part of what could happen every day. In the event that it does happen, they need to be prepared as well as the students do,” Dee Walsh, the Principal of Madison Middle School, said.
Nationwide, sirens sounded off at 9:15 a.m. Wednesday, March 2 and Madison Middle School acted like it was the real thing.
Just minutes later, students filled the hallways, sat with their backs along the walls and heads down.
The drill lasted about 10 minutes and students felt good about how smooth it went.
“You need to have a plan because it can happen at any time of the day, you don’t know when it’s going to happen,” Justin Storm, an 8th-grade student at Madison Middle School, said.
“I think it’s real important that we need to do these because you never know when a tornado is going to happen. You need to be prepared, everyone needs to be prepared,” Maddie Howell, an 8th-grade student at Madison Middle School, said.
So far in 2016, Madison County has had one tornado.
But there were four tornadoes in 2015; two in April and another two in November.
Shantavia Robinson, an 8th-grade student at Madison Middle School, says she remembers being at school in the second grade during a tornado warning.
“It was storming and thundering and lightening. They told us like the sirens went off and were like, this is real. I was crying and everything. I was really scared. That was like my first experience of a tornado, they told us it went over our heads,” Robinson said.
Principal Walsh says her school has already had seven or eight drills this year for different disasters, like fires, hurricanes and even active shooter drills.
“Safety is the first thing. When they come through that door, every morning, safety comes first then academics,” Principal Walsh said.
Thursday’s severe weather event will focus on lightening.
Whereas on Friday, it will bring awareness to warnings and alerts as a whole.