Severe Weather is fun and exciting but can also be very dangerous.. here are a few thoughts about ways to protect yourself and raise your personal awareness.
1. Have a good radar app-- Android- Rainy Days, iPhone- My Radar. Have them in motion so you see if the storm is moving towards you..etc.
As a corollary- if you're not good at geography, learn a little. Often a warning cites a location and tells you where the storm is heading. Example : Storm is near Forest and heading NE towards Lynchburg and Madison Heights. That's an easy example. Know the counties near you so you get an idea where these things are headed.
2. Beware of OLD 411 on Facebook. Often a warning gets issued for a region and the next AM it's cycled up on Facebook again. Once again, if anyone has Zuckerberg's email, let him know to write some code so we can expire weather data, which has become a great medium to get important information to the masses.
3. TWC- TWC is a nice resource, but in severe weather times, I strongly recommend watching your local stations. Why? TWC covers the entire nation and your local guy does your area specifically and only. Yeah, TWC scrolls your data non stop, but they will also have tons of 411 on wherever else in the nation is having severe storms. This is NOT a knock on TWC, but advising you to find more specific information to your area.
4. Lighting and outside play, sporting games. If you hear thunder, end the game, Get your kid off the field, out the pool, etc Lighting can be 10 miles away from a storm. Many places have adapted policies to reflect this but don't allow parents, coaches or even you kids (please let us swim longer, it's far away) The pool will be there when the storm passes, the game can be rescheduled but lives can't be resurrected nor do all injuries heal as we want.
5. Know the difference between Watch and Warning.
Watch- storms are possible with *hail, strong winds, tornadoes
Warning storms are happening with hail, strong winds, tornadoes
With that, learning geography helps because a Tornado warning for Henry County for a storm heading Due East shouldn't scare you if you live in Evington. :)