Local Emergency Managers Team Up to Get Ready Together for America’s PrepareAthon!

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DENTON, Texas — Emergency managers in the Dallas/Fort Worth metro area teamed up today to get ready together in case tornadoes hit North Texas in the future.

FEMA Region 6 in Denton, the city of Denton and the Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District (GCISD) conducted simultaneous tornado drills as part of a “National Day of Action” for a campaign called America’s PrepareAthon! The campaign encourages people to work collectively to be prepared personally and professionally by staying informed, creating a plan, building a kit and getting involved.

The city of Denton held a tornado drill at the main City Hall building.

“Tornados are one of our primary severe weather threats.  The city of Denton was pleased to participate with FEMA Region 6 in a National Day of Action to test our tornado shelter plans. We encourage all residents to visit www.KnowWhat2do.com and learn how to be prepared for severe storms and other types of potential emergencies we are susceptible to in north central Texas,” stated Michael Penaluna, emergency management coordinator. 

Grapevine-Colleyville ISD held its tornado drill at Cross Timbers Middle School.

“As a school district, we have students in our care for eight hours a day, on average, every school day. A lot can happen in that time, particularly with the weather, and we have to be ready to move entire schools or groups of schools into secure positions at a moment’s notice,” said Michele Linn, GCISD’s emergency management coordinator and director of risk management. “Practice is the key to swift action and we run drills such as these throughout the year to train students and staff on safety procedures. Having the opportunity to partner with our city emergency operations, first responders and regional experts from FEMA on today’s drill further strengthens our ties as a community and reinforces our common goal to provide safe and secure learning environments for our students and staff.”

FEMA Region 6 held its tornado drills at its campuses in Texas and Louisiana and at its disaster field offices in Oklahoma and New Mexico.

Everyone should have a plan of action individually, for their families and their communities before a disaster strikes,” said FEMA Region 6 Administrator Tony Robinson. “Practicing plans like we are today makes us safer and practicing, and preparing, together – as a team – just makes good sense.”

Visit www.ready.gov/prepare for more information on America’s PrepareAthon! You can find tools to stage your own emergency preparedness drills, as well as register any preparedness activities for you or your community. 

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