News Flash Home
The original item was published from 3/4/2023 3:10:18 PM to 3/12/2023 12:00:09 AM.

News Flash


Posted on: March 4, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill Set for March 7th

VDEM - Participate in VA Statewide Tornado Drill - March 7 2023

As part of the drill this year Goochland will be testing our CodeRED emergency alert system.  Individuals in the County will receive a test notification via phone call, email, and text message.  Everyone who lives or works in Goochland is urged to register for Goochland’s CodeRED emergency alert system; this system is used to communicate about emergencies and other critical community notifications.  

For more information and to sign up visit:  Citizens can also now enroll by texting GOOCHLANDALERTS to 99411.

Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill

Tornadoes can occur any month of the year.  Peak tornado season in Virginia takes place from May to September, however tornadoes can occur any time of year; striking quickly, with little to no warning, causing extensive damage. Over the last decade, Virginia has averaged 24 tornadoes per year. As you may recall, Goochland had two confirmed tornadoes touch down in June of last year.

The National Weather Service and The Virginia Department of Emergency Management have scheduled the 2023 Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill for Tuesday, March 7 at 9:45 a.m. If widespread severe weather threatens the Commonwealth on that date, the drill will be rescheduled for Thursday, March 9, at 9:45 a.m.

VDEM - Participate in VA Statewide Tornado Drill - March 7 2023

The annual Statewide Tornado Drill is an opportunity to prepare Virginians for tornado threats and to test public warning systems.  Every school, business, work place, and family in Goochland County and across the state is strongly encouraged to participate in the statewide tornado drill.

The drill will start at approximately 9:45 a.m. with a test tornado warning sent in the form of a required monthly test by the National Weather Service (NWS) to National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) weather radios and local broadcasters.  There WILL NOT be an actual Tornado Warning issued.

Since this year’s drill will use the required monthly test, most NOAA weather radios will NOT automatically sound an alert tone alert. For those participating in the drill, including schools and businesses, turn on your NOAA Weather Radio by 9:40 am and listen to the voice broadcast. Those listening to the broadcast will hear the audible test alert broadcast at 9:45 am. Local radio stations, TV stations and cable outlets will also broadcast the test message via the Emergency Alert System (EAS). 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, organization, or family feel that you have adequately practiced your tornado shelter procedures.   Information and resources are available at

VDEM_Show_Your_Shelter_Final March 7 2023

Tornadoes have occurred in every month of the year but are most likely from April through September. Have a plan, know your location and surroundings and have a way to receive Watches and Warnings from the National Weather Service. Check to see if your smartphone is set to receive Wireless Emergency Alerts. When a tornado watch is issued for your area, review your plan and know where to seek safe shelter when a tornado warning is issued.

VDEM - Turn on Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) - Apple

VDEM - Turn on Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) - Android

What is a tornado?

A tornado is a violently rotating column of air that extends from the clouds to the ground and is often, although not always, visible as a funnel cloud. Lightening and hail are common in storms that produce tornadoes. 

Tornadoes may strike quickly, with little to no warning, causing extensive damage to structures and disrupting transportation, power, water, gas, communications and other services in its direct path and in neighboring areas.

VDEM - Tornado Watch and Warning


Tornadoes are possible. Move close to a shelter or sturdy building in case there is a warning.


A tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar. Take shelter immediately.

NWS - VA Statewide Tornado Drill - Know Where to Go - March 7 2023

Goochland's CodeRed Emergency Alert System

Everyone who lives or works in Goochland is urged to register for Goochland’s CodeRED emergency alert system. This system is used by Goochland County to communicate with citizens during emergencies.  The system allows citizens to opt in to receive National Weather Service (NWS) alerts automatically when a weather event (flood, tornado, etc.) is triggered in a targeted area of the County.  For more information and to sign up visit:  Citizens can also now enroll by texting GOOCHLANDALERTS to 99411.

Tornado Resources

For more information about tornado preparedness, visit the following resources:

Ready.Gov Tornado Safety Tips:

National Weather Service – Tornado Safety Tips:
Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in Administration

Spotlight On - Courthouse Village

Spotlight On: Courthouse Village

Posted on: August 10, 2023
Placing a temporary sign (1)

Temporary Signage Regulations

Posted on: May 26, 2023