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Bladen County schools will conduct a tornado drill Wednesday at 9:30 a.m. as part of a statewide drill being held in conjunction with Severe Weather Preparedness Week.

The National Weather Service office in Raleigh encourages schools, businesses, work places, and families to participate in the drill.

The National Weather Service also notes:

** The drill will be broadcast on NOAA Weather Radio and the Emergency Alert System via the Required Monthly Test (RMT). There will not be an actual tornado warning issued.

** Most NOAA Weather Radio receivers (including the Midland WR-100 that many schools have) do not sound an audible alert for the RMT product; but instead, may have a blinking light on the display to indicate that an RMT was received. As such, when the RMT for the statewide tornado drill is initiated Wednesday, there is a good chance that your NOAA Weather Radio will not sound an alarm.

** Since your NOAA Weather Radio may not sound an alarm at the time the RMT is issued, you will want to do one of the following: Plan to start the drill at 9:30 a.m., or you can manually turn on your NOAA Weather Radio receiver and simply listen to the audio broadcast to hear when the RMT is issued, which will mark the beginning of the statewide tornado drill.

** There will be no follow-up statements issued by the NWS to mark the end of the statewide tornado drill. It will simply be over when your group, school, business, or organization feels that you have adequately practiced your tornado shelter procedures.

** If there is actual severe weather occurring at the time of the scheduled drill, the statewide tornado drill will be postponed. The alternate date for the drill is Friday.

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