Meridian, Miss. LEMA Director Scott Spears tells Newscenter 11 his team will be watching the weather closely in the overnight hours Thursday and if conditions worsen, the emergency operations center will then open.
The breezy, yet sunny weather made for a great day to walk or run at Bonita Lakes, or to go horseback riding at Northeast Park. The sky gave no indication of any severe weather moving into our area. But severe weather was still on the minds of those we talked to.
"Well, as far as making sure we take shelter," Meridian resident Jessica Reed said. "You know, properly staying away from the windows. Making sure we find a safe place in the home to, if we have to, take cover. And we making sure we have everything we need before the storm gets bad."
"Well, my answer is usually pretty straight forward," Meridian resident Courtney Windom said. "I'm just going to stay in the house because usually I'm out late you know, doing certain things. But I'm not, i'm not doing anything tonight. I'm just going to stay in the house."
Of course, the risk of severe weather now comes almost one year to the day after a tornado struck Kemper County and claimed the life of one man while seriously damaging homes and businesses. Some of the homes impacted were actually damaged during the April 2011 tornadoes that struck Kemper County. That's why people everywhere aren't taking any chances.
"In the past, when we actually experienced severe weather, it has actually caused damage to homes," Reed remembers. "You know, big trees falling on houses, causing a lot of damage. So, we're taking extra precaution."
"Well, I'm nervous because i have a pet cat and he's scared of thunder, so if anything weather-related, he's going to be right up under me," Windom explained. "And I like my space."
Speaking of pets, it is a good idea to keep a close eye on any outdoor pets during this threat for severe weather. And if at all possible, bring them inside.