Prepare for Tornado Season 2022

tornado season 2022

Spawned from powerful thunderstorms or hurricanes, tornadoes can cause fatalities and devastate neighborhoods in seconds. A tornado appears as a rotating, funnel-shaped cloud that extends from a thunderstorm to the ground with whirling winds that can reach 300 mph. Damage paths can be in excess of a single mile wide and 50 miles long. Some tornadoes are clearly visible, while rain or nearby clouds obscure others. Occasionally, tornadoes develop so rapidly that little, if any, advance warning is possible. Before a tornado hits, the wind may die down and the air may become very still. A cloud of debris can mark the location of a tornado even if a funnel is not visible. Tornadoes generally occur near the trailing edge of a thunderstorm. It is not uncommon to see clear, sunlit skies behind a tornado. To prepare for tornado season 2022 in your community, consider the following guidance.

Before Tornado Season 2022

There are some simple steps you can take to protect your home and family from tornadoes:

  •  Build an emergency kit and develop a family communication plan. 
  • Monitor your cellphone, the radio and the television for the latest information regarding local tornado risks. In any emergency, always listen to the instructions given by local officials.
  •  Be alert to changing weather conditions. Look for approaching storms.
  •  Look for the following danger signs:
    •  A dark, often greenish sky
    •  Large hail
    • A large, dark, rotating cloud
    •  A loud roar

If you see any danger signs or an approaching storm, be prepared to take shelter immediately.

During a Tornado

If you are under a tornado warning, seek shelter immediately. Most injuries associated with high winds are from flying debris, so remember to protect your head.

If you are:Then:
In a structure (e.g., a residence, small building, school, nursing home, hospital, factory, shopping center or high-rise building) – Go to a pre-designated shelter area such as a safe room, basement, storm cellar or the lowest building level. If there is no basement, go to the center of a room on the lowest level (e.g., closet, interior hallway) away from corners, windows, doors and outside walls. Put as many walls as possible between you and the outdoors. Get under a sturdy table and use your arms to protect your head and neck.
– In a high-rise building, go to a small interior room or hallway on the lowest floor possible.
– Put on sturdy shoes.Do not open any windows.
In a trailer or mobile home – Get out immediately and go to the lowest floor of a nearby sturdy building or a storm shelter. Mobile homes, even if tied down, offer little protection from tornadoes.
Outside with no shelter – Immediately get into a vehicle, buckle your seat belt and try to drive to the closest sturdy shelter.
– If your vehicle is hit by flying debris while you are driving, safely pull over and park.
– Stay in the vehicle with your seatbelt on. Put your head down below the windows; cover your head with your hands and a blanket, coat or other cushion if possible. 
– If you can safely get noticeably lower than the level of the roadway, leave your car and lie in that area, covering your head with your hands.
– Do not get under an overpass or bridge. You are safer in a low, flat location. 
– Never try to outrun a tornado in a car or truck in urban or congested areas. Instead, leave the vehicle immediately for safe shelter.
– Watch out for flying debris. Flying debris from tornadoes causes most fatalities and injuries.

After a Tornado

Injuries may result from the direct impact of a tornado, or they may occur afterward when people walk among debris and enter damaged buildings. In fact, a study of injuries after a tornado in Marion, Illinois, showed that 50% of tornado-related injuries were suffered during rescue attempts, cleanup and other post-tornado activities. Nearly one-third of those injuries resulted from stepping on nails. Because tornadoes often damage power lines, gas lines and electrical systems, there is a risk of fire, electrocution or explosion. Protecting yourself and your family requires prompt treatment of any injuries suffered during the storm and the use of extreme care to avoid further hazards.

Do not attempt to move seriously injured people, unless they are in immediate danger of further injuries. Rather, get medical assistance immediately. If someone has stopped breathing, begin CPR—so long as you are trained to do so. To stop a bleeding injury, apply direct pressure to the wound. Have puncture wounds evaluated by a physician. If you are trapped, try to attract attention to your location.

General Safety Precautions for Tornado Season 2022

Here are some safety precautions that can help you avoid injury after tornado season 2022:

  • Continue to monitor your cellphone, radio or television for emergency information.
  • Be careful when entering any structure that has been damaged.
  • Wear sturdy shoes or boots, long sleeves and gloves when handling or walking near debris.
  • Be aware of hazards from sharp objects—such as exposed nails and broken glass.
  • Do not touch downed power lines or objects in contact with these lines. Report electrical hazards to the police and the utility company.
  • Use battery-powered lanterns rather than candles, if possible, to light homes without electrical power. If you use candles, make sure they are in safe holders and kept away from curtains, paper, wood or other flammable items. Never leave a candle burning when you are out of the room.
  • Never use generators, pressure washers, grills, camp stoves or other gasoline-, propane-, natural gas- or charcoal-burning devices inside your home, basement, garage or camper—or even outside near an open window, door or vent. These devices can produce carbon monoxide (CO), an odorless, colorless gas that can cause sudden illness and death if it builds up inside your home. Seek prompt medical attention if you suspect CO poisoning and are feeling dizzy, light-headed or nauseated.
  • Cooperate fully with local officials.
  • Respond to requests for volunteer assistance by police, fire fighters, emergency management and relief organizations, but do not go into damaged areas unless assistance has been requested. Your presence could hamper relief efforts and you could endanger yourself.

Inspecting the Damage

You may be tempted to inspect the damage a tornado causes after a storm, but keep these safety tips in mind:

  • After a tornado, be aware of possible structural, electrical or gas-leak hazards in your home. Contact your local city or county building inspectors for information on structural safety codes and standards. They may also offer suggestions on finding a qualified contractor to do work for you.
  • In general, if you suspect any damage to your home, shut off electrical power, natural gas and propane tanks to avoid fires, electrocution or explosions.
  • In the event that it is dark when you are inspecting your home, use a flashlight rather than a candle or torch to avoid the risk of fire or explosion in a damaged home.
  • If you see frayed wiring or sparks, or if there is an odor of something burning, you should immediately shut off the electrical system at the main circuit breaker if you have not done so already.
  •  If you smell gas or suspect a leak, turn off the main gas valve, open all windows and leave the house immediately. Notify the gas company, the police or fire department and do not turn on the lights, light matches, smoke or do anything that could cause a spark. Do not return to your house until you are told it is safe to do so.

Safety During Cleanup

Keep these points in mind when cleaning up after a tornado:

  •  Wear long sleeves, gloves, and sturdy shoes or boots.
  •  Learn proper safety procedures and operating instructions before operating any gas-powered or electric-powered saws or tools.
  •  Clean up spilled medicines, drugs, flammable liquids and other potentially hazardous materials.

Acentria Insurance is committed to helping you and your loved ones stay safe when disaster strikes. Protect yourself from tornado season 2022 with Acentria’s homeowner, and personal collections insurance, contact us today.

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Jenny Cirioni

Vice President, Operations
Northeast, Florida

Todd Lawrence

Executive Vice President
Southeast Florida

Rob Wagner

Executive Vice President
Southwest Florida Region

Alan Florez

Executive Vice President, National Sales

Alan leads new business growth strategies and expansion, guides the development of resources and training for Sales Producers and their partnerships with Carriers. With over 15 years of industry experience, Alan also leads the Acentria Public Risk divisions working with municipalities and government entities for their coverage needs. He was appointed to the Halifax Health Board of Commissioners December 2020 and also serves as an Executive Committee member for our parent company, Foundation Risk Partners.

Previously, Alan served as Governor Jeb Bush’s Deputy Director of Legislative Affairs and Special Assistant. He is a former member of the University of Central Florida Board of Trustees and currently volunteers his time with the Florida Council of 100, Futures Foundation of Volusia County Schools and the Community Foundation of Flagler and Volusia. Alan holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Central Florida.

Anne Kraus

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Panhandle of Florida Region

Teresa Fillmon

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Alex Doberstein

Vice President
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Eric Austin

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Port St. Lucie & West Palm Beach

Luke Wolkers

Executive Vice President
Employee Benefits

Chris Tolland

Executive Vice President
Northeast Florida Sales

Brian Stanton

Executive Vice President
Southeast Florida

Nathan Marks

Executive Vice President
Northwest Florida

Jason Cruse

Executive Vice President
Central Florida Sales

Jackie Shaw

Senior Vice President
Agency Operations

Jessica Parkhurst

Senior Vice President
Marketing & Branding

Doreen Castro

Senior Vice President
Personal Lines Operations

Kendall McEachern

Co-Founder

Kendall was a fundamental part of Acentria Insurance. As a co-founder, he brought more than 30 years of industry expertise to Acentria, helping transform the organization into a leading insurance provider. Beloved by team members, carrier partners and clients, he oversaw more than 400,000 insured multi-family units with property values greater than $22 billion, and over four million square feet of commercial office space and real estate buildings. Kendall has received numerous industry awards to include being recognized as a National Top Producer and Agent of the Year by both Insurance Business America and Insurance Journal. Away from the office, he served as chairman for the American Heart Association, actively participated in his church and golfing, watching sports and spending time with his family. Kendall passed away in January of 2021, leaving a lasting legacy on Acentria’s culture, success, industry-wide reputation – and on all of us fortunate to have worked alongside him.

Mary Lawless

President & Chief Operating Officer

As President and Chief Operating Officer, Mary brings over three decades of industry expertise to Acentria Insurance. With a strong focus on Mergers & Acquisitions, Mary is passionate about partnering with new agencies and leaders to continue the overall upward growth of Acentria. She works in conjunction with the CEO to lead and deliver specialized sales products, services and industry leading capabilities while implementing business and sales strategies to the Acentria sales team and carrier partners. Mary has direct oversight of all operational leaders throughout the entire organizational footprint and is responsible for operational financials and budgets.

She empowers her team members and because of it, is well respected by her peers and those she leads. Since her time with Acentria, Mary’s leadership has contributed to the agency’s exponential growth from 15 to well over 50 locations, increasing employment to over 700 team members, across the southeastern United States. Due to her leadership and contributions to the insurance industry, she has been nationally recognized as one of Insurance Business America magazine’s Elite Women and serves as a valuable member on the Executive Committee for Foundation Risk Partners, Acentria’s parent company. Prior to joining Acentria Insurance, Mary led operations for another national broker. Throughout her tenure, she has held a variety of management positions in Personal Lines, Select Business and Employee Benefits. Mary specializes in agency operations, partnerships and acquisitions and is truly passionate about developing team members to become great leaders.

When not shaping the future industry leaders at Acentria Insurance, Mary enjoys traveling and spending time with her husband, Pat and their family and friends.

Mitch Weinstein

Partner & Co-Founder

As partner of Acentria Insurance, Mitch plays an integral role in mergers & acquisitions. He focuses on seeking out strategic like-minded partners and agencies, across the southeastern United States, to partner and join the Acentria family.

Mitch has over 42 years of business leadership experience that ranges from law enforcement to the finance, healthcare and insurance industries. He was instrumental in developing the nation’s first “at-risk” managed care network for physical and occupational therapy serving the worker’s compensation industry. This network paved the way for a new managed care system, based on incentives.

Mitch is passionate about giving back to the youth of his community. He is an active supporter of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Polk County and believes in helping all young people reach their full potential. He is also the founder of Fallen First Reserve which is a non-profit organization dedicated to financially assisting those family members of First Responders killed in the line of duty and military members killed in action. Mitch also serves on the board for Fund the First.

Kevin Mason

Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder

As Chief Executive Office of Acentria Insurance, Kevin focuses on developing insurance solutions that strengthen Acentria’s presence in the market and its commitment to client-relationships and exceptional service. With over 35 years of industry experience, he specializes in the overall growth of Acentria as is passionate about bringing new talent to the organization both organically and through mergers and acquisitions. Through his leadership and the support of the Executive Leadership team, Acentria Insurance instills a positive corporate culture which has led the agency in being recognized as a leader within our industry as a Top 100 Workplace, Employer of Choice, Best Agency to Work For and several other national and regional accolades.

Before co-founding Acentria Insurance, Kevin served as Branch Manager for another national broker. Kevin holds the prestigious title as an Agent of the Year and five-time National Top Producer. He is also a key member of the Foundation Risk Partners Executive Committee, which is the parent company of Acentria Insurance, while also serving as the National Director for Carrier Relations. In addition, Kevin oversees the Sales Leadership Council, which encompasses sales leaders across the entire FRP footprint in an effort to develop and refine shared resources while offering producer training and development programs.

Kevin received a Bachelor’s Degree in Management from the University of West Florida. He is very active in his community and served over a decade on the Board of Directors of Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation and remains as a trustee, which funds over 14 children’s charities along the Florida Panhandle. He is also a member of the Destin Chamber of Commerce, Community Association Institute and Florida Association of Insurance Agents. In his spare time, Kevin enjoys golfing, tennis, boating and spending time with his wife Laura, and their children.