PEARL – Gov. Phil Bryant declares Feb. 3-7 Severe Weather Preparedness Week in Mississippi.

The National Weather Service will issue a statewide test tornado warning on NOAA weather radios at 9:15 on Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014. Schools, government agencies and businesses throughout the state are encouraged to participate in the tornado drill.

“The past few weeks have been dominated by winter weather, but now we have to switch our focus to severe weather,” Gov. Bryant said. “Take the time now to sit down and talk about how you and your family would respond if severe weather threatened your area.”

Severe weather can occur in any month in Mississippi and can include thunderstorms, tornadoes and flooding. According to the NWS, two Mississippians were killed and nearly 100 were injured during severe weather outbreaks in 2013.

“Every Mississippian should have a way to receive alerts when there is a threat of severe weather,” said MEMA Director Robert Latham. “Our citizens also need to understand what actions to take when alerts are issued. If individuals, families and communities are better prepared for severe weather, we can save lives.”

There are several ways to receive severe weather warnings, like a NOAA weather radio, or one of several applications on mobile devices. A number of free mobile applications are available for download on smart phones, which can alert you when a watch or warning is issued for your area.

“Even though weather conditions have been cold so far this year, residents of Mississippi should remember that spring and our primary severe weather season is just around the corner,” said Jackson NWS Meteorologist in Charge Alan Gerard. “Now is the time to prepare.”

Local weather information and alerts are available through the NWS online at the following websites:

For detailed preparedness information, contact your county emergency management agency, or go to MEMA’s website at The best way to get up-to-date information is to “Like” MEMA on Facebook, or “Follow” us on twitter.

During last week’s winter storms, MEMA had a reach of more than 100,000 people on Facebook, and more than 15,000 website visits.