CLEARWATER -- Wednesday is Florida's tornado awareness day, including a statewide tornado drill.
Schools, businesses, government agencies and individuals will take part in the voluntary exercise. It begins at 8 a.m. (Eastern) when participants will act as though they are under a tornado watch. Organizations will pick a coordinator and exposed areas will be cleared out.
At around 10 a.m. Eastern (9 a.m. Central), the National Weather Service will send out a "routine" weekly test message. You may also receive it on your phone if you subscribe to a local alert system such as Alert Pinellas or Alert Tampa. Participants will treat that test as a tornado warning and take cover in a designated safe area. The drill will end about half an hour later, at individual discretion.
Stephanie Hendrix with Pinellas County Emergency Management says they're encouraging people to post selfies of themselves taking part in the drill using the hashtag #PCTornadoDrill . Hendrix says she's watching for participants with "good technique."
Find out more about the tornado drill by listening to our Beyond the News podcast below: