NC students participate in statewide tornado drill

(Colton West | CBS North Carolina)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — At 9:30 Wednesday morning, all across North Carolina, schools — including Lacy Elementary in Raleigh —participated in the statewide tornado drill.

Students were ready.

Second grader Eric Vining said he was ready.

“I thought it was actually pretty good,” he said. “I saw a few people when I was down, I saw a few people moving a little, but I think it was because they were getting a little uncomfortable.”

Fifth grader Addison Sherlin thought the same thing, saying, “I think we all did very good because most students take this very seriously, because they know the risk of tornadoes.”

Every year during Severe Weather Awareness Week, the tornado drill is practiced. The hope is that, if the real thing happens, schools will be ready.

Lacy Elementary Principal Principal Candace Watson was proud of her students and faculty.

“Our teachers do a wonderful job in preparing our students to what their expectations are, and what they need to do to be safe during a severe weather event,” she said. “And our students did a great job in responding to that.”

Watson is always looking for ways to improve the process.

“We are always looking to evaluate the safety and procedures we use,” she said. “We tweak it every year to make it better, to make sure students are safe”

Students have been well-drilled on tornado safety at Lacey. They know to stay away from glass. Lacy has a lot of natural light, so the interior hallway is the safest spot during a tornado

After the drill, the fifth graders got a visit from Nick Petro, the Severe Weather Expert from the National Weather Service, who brought in a tornado simulator. Students also learned how important it is to have a safety plan at home.

Addison Sherlin said, “my dad would take one dog, my brother would take our hermit crabs and I would take our hamster, and we would go into the storage room, and we would have a phone that would tell us if the tornado, if we were safe to go out.”

WNCN has a weather app that you can download, which will alert you when tornadoes threaten your area.

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