FORT MYERS, Fla. — It has been four months since six tornadoes ripped across Southwest Florida causing over a million dollars in damage.
Yesterday, NOAA National Severe Storms Laboratory introduced a new citizen science tool designed to help researchers better understand how people receive, interpret, and respond to tornado information.
Tornado Tales, as it is being called, is a new online survey that provides a way for people impacted by tornadoes to share their experiences anonymously with NOAA researchers.
The survey asks basic questions about the individual’s responses to warnings and watches, how they prepared and monitored the weather, and what safe space they used to shelter when the warning was issued. This information can help researchers identify areas where warning messages may not be resulting in the safest and most effective actions.
“Understanding people’s experiences gives scientists a much better picture of where research is needed, whether it’s research to improve safety messages or to assess the need for local changes, such as developing reasonable shelter options,” said Justin Sharpe, Project Coordinator, Cooperative Institute for Severe and High-Impact Weather Research and Operations (CIWRO).
The survey for example: Asks if you were in your house or your car, did you receive an alert, and how did you weather the storm? And whether you were affected by the tornado outbreak in January or at any other time of your life, the information that you could provide to NOAA can help improve community preparedness ahead of the next tornado outbreak.
You can fill out the online survey here.