Shelter registration could save lives after storms - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Shelter registration could save lives after storms

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Registration will help responders locate your shelter if storm debris blocks your escape. Registration will help responders locate your shelter if storm debris blocks your escape.
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LAUDERDALE COUNTY, AL (WAFF) -

With Spring severe weather season well underway, emergency responders in the Shoals are asking for the community's help to prepare.

Many homeowners in rural areas have their own storm shelters, and after the deadly 2011 tornado outbreak, a lot more have had them installed.

Firefighters are asking residents to register their shelters. Registration forms can be found at any volunteer fire department in Lauderdale County, and it takes just a few minutes to fill out. Officials said these few moments could help save your life in the event of a disaster.

Here's the scenario, one that's not uncommon in the Valley – a tornado hits, and debris is scattered across your property. Some of it has landed on top of your shelter, preventing you from getting out.

Emergency responders will immediately begin their recovery efforts. If you registered your shelter with the fire department, search and rescue crews will know exactly where to start looking for you, to get you the medical assistance you may need.

Officials said this list will help crews be more efficient and effective with their rescue missions.

"The search and rescue is never easy, but if we know where we have certain designated areas to search, it makes the process a whole lot faster," said Adam McCanless of the Lauderdale County Volunteer Firefighter Association.

The registration form is also available online for you to submit.

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