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Hail Safety

Safety Tips

If you are in a vehicle...

  • Stop driving.
  • If you can see a safe place close-by to drive to (like inside a garage, under a highway overpass, or under a service station awning), do so as soon as you can.
  • Make sure you pull completely off the highway.
  • Do NOT leave the vehicle until it stops hailing. Your car will furnish reasonable protection.
  • Cover your eyes.
  • If possible, get onto the floor face down, or lay down on the seat with your back to the windows.
  • Put very small children under you, and cover their eyes.

If you are in a building...

  • Stay inside.
  • Don’t go into the basement.
  • Stay away from windows, especially those being struck by hail.
  • Account for all family members, building occupants, pets, etc.
  • Do not go outside for any reason.
  • Avoid using telephones and electrical appliances during a severe storm to avoid the danger of electrocution from lightning.

If you are outdoors...

  • Seek shelter immediately.
  • If you can’t find something to protect your entire body, at least find something to protect your head.
  • Trees are a last resort. It is common during severe storms for trees to lose branches. Also, large isolated trees attract lightning.
  • Keep away from areas with deep hail.
  • Try to find shelter from deep hail and lightning.
  • Stay out of culverts and lowland areas to avoid being swept away by water or deep hail.

The hail season in Missouri is March through October, but the majority falls during May through August. Hail is primarily an afternoon or evening phenomenon in Missouri. Most severe hailstorms occur between 1:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. MDT. Hailstorms rarely last more than 15 minutes. The median duration is 6 minutes.

There are four situations that represent safety concerns for you and your family during a hailstorm.

If you are...

  • Experiencing large hail, but no one is injured. Follow the Large Hail Safety Tips found on this site.
  • Experiencing large hail, and someone is injured. Dial 9-1-1 to report the injury and the approximate size of the hail. Follow the Dispatcher’s instructions.
  • Experiencing deep hail and/or road flooding, but no one is injured or trapped Follow the Deep Hail Safety Tips included in on this site.
  • Experiencing deep hail and/or road flooding, and someone is injured or trapped Dial 9-1-1 to report the situation. Follow the Dispatcher’s instructions. Then follow the Large Hail and Deep Hail Tips included on this site Large Hail Safety Tips Large Hail is hail that is larger than 3/4” in diameter.
 

 

 

Some Helpful Links about Hail:

Thunderstorm Hazards: Hail

Hailstorms

Hail Fact sheet

 

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