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Tornado Safe Room Grants

Residents and visitors in four Minnesota communities will be safer during tornadoes thanks to FEMA and local funding for tornado safe rooms.

FEMA approved grants to Stearns County and the cities of Scandia, Forest Lake and Rochester.

The tornado safe rooms will be built at locations that currently lack adequate shelter during severe weather. 

In Rochester, for example, the safe room will be built at the Quarry Hill Nature Center. HSEM Director Kris Eide discussed the importance of tornado safe rooms in this television report.   ​

Training for Oil Trains in Anoka County

Kevin Reed Coon Rapids Oil Trains for web.jpgThe increased transport of oil from North Dakota through Minnesota requires increased training for local first responders. On April 4, Homeland Security and Operations Branch Director Kevin Reed spoke to police and fire officials in Anoka County.

Coon Rapids Police Captain Cary Parks invited Reed to address the latest recommendations on response to oil train derailments resulting in fire. Reed shared a sample of Bakken oil and explained why the best response may be to let the fire burn out while protecting critical assets near the scene and safely evacuating those nearby.  

Minnesota School Safety Center Video

​Students and staff are now seeing members of the Minnesota School Safety Center work to make schools even safer. Director Nancy Lageson sits down with DPS Communications Director Bruce Gordon to discuss how the center will benefit Minnesotans. In this DPS-produced video, you'll learn how school safety center staff members train public safety professionals and work with individual schools to enhance school safety.  

Severe Weather Awareness Week 2014