• Dangerous Weather Information

    Purpose:

    Weather monitoring and our responses to dangerous weather events are key components of our emergency management posture.  

    The majority of the material listed below focuses on thunderstorms and the hazards these storms produce – damaging winds, lightning, hail, tornadoes, flash floods, and winter weather. 

    Springtown ISD’s priorities during emergent events are outlined below:

    1. Protection of life, 
    2. Protection of property, 
    3. Recovery and Continuity of Services.

     

    Lightning

    The DFW area averages over 46 thunderstorm days per year.  By definition, a thunderstorm contains lightning.  Lightning poses a significant threat to anyone outdoors.  Perry Weather and our Pocket Perry Weather application offer detailed storm prediction and lightning alerts for our district. 

    Lightning Advisory / Lightning Caution

    Indicates lightning has occurred within a 10 - 30 mile radius of a campus or district area, and the potential exists for the storm to move closer to the area. The Advisory or Caution will stay in effect until the threat of lightning is no longer within the indicated range.

    When an Advisory or Caution is issued during the school day, the following shall occur on the campus:

    • Notice by office staff shall be issued to all staff members with students outside (playground, PE and athletic fields, ag barn, band marching field, and other learning areas) that an Advisory or Caution notice has been issued.
    • Plans will be made to bring students into safe shelter if the alert goes to a warning.

    Students and staff are allowed to stay outside in their activity during an Advisory or Caution.

    • Campus administrators may choose to move students and staff indoors during an advisory notice.
    • Athletic trainers and head coaches may choose to move students and coaching staff indoors during an advisory notice.

    Lightning Warning

    Indicates lightning is now moving within 10 miles of a campus or district area.

    When a warning is issued during the school day the following shall occur on the campus:

    • Notice by office staff will be issued to all staff members with students outside (playground, PE and athletic fields, ag barn, band marching field, and other learning areas) to immediately move all students and staff into safe shelter until the warning has been removed.
    • Organizations that conduct outside activities before and/or after school hours will immediately move into safe shelter until the warning has been removed.
    • Admin will hold staff and students inside until given the “All Clear” from the Director of Safety and Security or district level administrator. The warning will stay in effect until the threat of lightning has moved outside the 10-mile range and there have been no lightning strikes for 30 continuous minutes.

    If a warning occurs at the end of the school day, each campus under the warning shall adhere to the follow procedures until the warning has been lifted:

    • Keep all staff and students in the building.
    • In the event that we need to shelter in place for dismissal, an announcement will be made over the intercom and social media outlets.
    • Teachers need to hold their students in the classroom and not allow students to leave the school building.
    • Buses will be held at the campus and students shall not be loaded onto them.
    • If buses have been loaded, have students remain on buses. Do not attempt to move them inside where they would be out in the weather
    • If a parent requests their child be released to them and campus staff has gone over all the information with the parent/guardian, the student will be released to them.
    • The warning will stay in effect until the threat of lightning has moved outside the 10-mile range and there have been no lightning strikes for 30 continuous minutes.
    • The district Communications Department will produce emergency "Parent Link" callouts for parents and guardians when a warning occurs that will delay dismissal. The message will be sent to all families in the district due to the impact of bus service, car riders, and students who walk.

    Tornadoes

    Severe thunderstorms are those storms that produce winds of 58 mph or greater and/or hail of 1 inch in diameter or larger. 

    Tornadoes are violently rotating columns of air attached to the cloud base above and in contact with the ground below.  Severe weather events and tornadoes are common in North Texas.  Keep in mind, that although most common during the warm weather months, severe weather can strike during any season.    

    If conditions are favorable for severe weather, the National Weather Service will issue either a Severe Thunderstorm Watch or Tornado Watch.  Again, a Watch means severe weather is possible.  Continue with your daily routine but be alert for the issuance of a severe thunderstorm warning.  A Severe Thunderstorm Warning or Tornado Warning means that severe thunderstorms or tornadoes respectively are imminent or occurring.  Take cover now to protect life and property!

    Winter Weather

    Extreme winter weather takes a toll on lives and property throughout many portions of the United States.  Heavy snow and freezing rain are responsible for numerous traffic fatalities each year.  Moreover, hundreds of deaths and injuries from hypothermia, exposure, and frostbite are reported each year as bitter cold air masses plunge into the United States during the winter.

    Many people are still injured or killed despite a long history of extreme winter weather activity in our region.  Of all winter deaths related to ice and snow, 70 percent occur in motor vehicle accidents and 25 percent are people caught out in the storm.

    • Snow Storms - We all know that snow can immobilize a region and paralyze a city, stranding commuters, stopping the flow of supplies, and disrupting emergency and medical services.    When snow is accompanied by wind, travel becomes even more hazardous.  School bus routes may be blocked by drifting snow and travel may be hindered by near whiteout conditions.  Oftentimes, bus service is delayed or unavailable.     
    • Ice Storms - Heavy accumulations of ice can bring down trees, utility lines, and communication towers, blocking roads and causing power outages.  Roadways become a glaze of ice and nearly impassable.  Again, school buses may be delayed or unavailable.
    • Extreme Cold - Extremely cold temperatures often accompany a winter storm or are felt in its wake.  Prolonged exposure can cause frostbite or hypothermia and can become life-threatening.  This is a problem especially for children waiting at bus stops or at outdoor recess. 

    When extremely cold temperatures are accompanied by wind, an especially dangerous situation exists.  The Wind Chill is based on the rate of heat loss from exposed skin caused by the combined effects of wind and cold.  As the wind increases, heat is carried away from the body at an accelerated rate, driving down the body temperature, leading to frostbite and/or hyperthermia.  

    Conclusion:

    Our goal is to ensure that every student's safety is adequately accounted for when the weather turns severe.  Only through awareness and preparedness, can the safety of all school children and personnel be assured.