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Minnesota town to discuss weather emergency preparation

PERHAM, Minn. - Patrick Waletzko, Otter Tail (Minn.) County Emergency Manager, will speak on the topic "Emergencies and Disasters Can Happen Here--Are You Ready?" at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, at the Ottertail Community Center.

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PERHAM, Minn. - Patrick Waletzko, Otter Tail (Minn.) County Emergency Manager, will speak on the topic "Emergencies and Disasters Can Happen Here-Are You Ready?" at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, at the Ottertail Community Center.

He will address specific topics such as the importance of being ready for disasters, identifying hazards, creating a family disaster plan, recovering from disaster and spotting storms and their features.

Over the past five years, severe weather has occurred in Otter Tail County, including 27 thunderstorms, 34 storms with hail, 23 funnel cloud sightings, 35 tornados, nine instances of heavy rain, six floods, 13 flash floods, two excessive heat warnings, 10 blizzards, 18 events with extreme wind chill, nine heavy snow storms and 30 winter storms. Families and residents are encouraged to "Pledge to Prepare" for such weather events.

Five NOAA public-alert-certified weather radios will be given away, according to Ottertail Fire Chief Stuart Fleischauer. The radios receive seven NOAA channels with flood, tornado, thunderstorms and other warnings. It also features a 25-county memory system; voice alert and flashing LED warning systems, as well as a built-in alarm clock and snooze feature.

The Ottertail Fireman's Relief Association is sponsoring the event. Everyone is invited to attend.

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