Oklahomans are no strangers to severe weather. From one day to the next, we know Mother Nature can have a mind of her own, but springtime often delivers the worst storms of the year. It’s important to ensure our families are prepared to handle emergencies and severe weather. Make sure you are signed up for emergency notifications in your area and that your weather radio is working so you are informed of the latest information. Take the time now to clean out your storm shelter or pick a safe room in your house, like a basement or interior room without windows, for you to go during a storm.

I also encourage you to sit down with your family and make a plan so that when disaster strikes, everyone knows exactly what to do. You can visit www.ready.gov to learn more about how to handle different natural disasters that may occur. You’ll be able to get information on flood safety, where to take shelter during a tornado, and what to pack in your emergency kit.

We know that it’s not a matter of if bad weather will happen, but when. Many communities across the district have already experienced severe storms. Just last week, tornadoes ripped through Madill and sadly, claimed the lives of two individuals. Since we are only part way through tornado season, there will surely be more to come.

When it comes to emergency preparedness, we should all hope for the best but prepare for the worst. Be proactive and make sure your family has a plan to stay safe in the event of any inclement weather.

Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) represents the second district in the U.S. House of Representatives. He can be reached through http://mullin.house.gov, and at 811-A N York St., Muskogee, OK 74403, 918-687-2533 or 202-225-2701.