Natural disasters take the lives of thousands of people each year. INSIDE EDITION has what you need to know to stay safe when Mother Nature goes on a rampage.
Bonnie Schneider is a meteorologist and the author of the new book, "Extreme Weather." She gave us some helpful tips on how to survive strong conditions.
Tip number one—stay informed. Always know what's headed your way.
Schneider said, "Try to avoid the situation. It is easier than you think. Just don't travel or go outside if there is the risk of dangerous conditions."
So what do you do if you face a monster tornado?
"You want to put as many walls between you and a tornado as possible. So you want to go to the most interior room. A closet, the bathroom. Take mattresses and pillows and use them to cushion you," said Schneider.
And here's something you might not have thought of.
"For kids, put bicycle helmets on them," she said.
Flash flooding can overtake you in seconds. In an emergency you need to know how to save yourself. You might only have seconds to react.
"You want to go straight up to the highest point," said Schneider.
Anyone who's been in an earthquake knows how helpless you can feel.
Schneider said, "The best place to be during an earthquake is a wide open space. You want to be as far from buildings as possible."
But if you are indoors when an earthquake strikes, some advice you've been given might be outdated.
Schneider said, "Under a door frame is a common thing that people think you should do, but some of the research I've found says it's better to get under a sturdy piece of furniture."
There is something you can do to save your property from catching fire.
Schneider said, "You want to create a defensible space around your home. You want to clear out your shrubbery that could catch fire."
Of course, there is no controlling Mother Nature, but it's up to you to have the best fighting chance possible.
"You don't want to be caught off-guard," said Schneider.
To read an excerpt from "Extreme Weather," please click on the PDF at the top of this page to download Chapter 13 - "How to Create A Family Disaster Plan for People and Pets."