New Alabama senate bill help establish safe spaces during severe weather


HEADLAND, Ala. (WDHN) — Alabama lawmakers are soon expected to debate a bill they hope will keep people safe during severe storms.

The Alabama Legislature is discussing a new bill that would put guidelines in place for designating safer place shelters during severe weather.

Representative Dexter Grimsley represents Alabama’s 85th district and has seen his fair share of severe weather here in the Wiregrass. That’s why he is dedicated to getting Senate Bill 43 passed so people can be safer when tornadoes and hurricanes hit.

“I am scared of all severe weather,” Grimsley said. “I take caution of the weather and understand that weather is unpredictable and just don’t know what will happen at any time. You need to make sure you fear the weather and make sure you take all precautions.”

He said people in the Wiregrass need to be safe and know where the closest safer place shelter is located.

SB-43 will require state emergency management agencies and county commissions to put in place a plan to offer more options for people to have safe spaces during severe weather.

“It gives them comfort knowing that if bad weather does come through, that they have a
place they can go and seek comfort and make sure they have the opportunity to ride out a storm,” Grimsley said. “It is very detrimental to know, if you don’t have anywhere to go.”

This bill was introduced during the last legislative session, but due to COVID-19, it was never presented on the floor. The goal is to have a space for people so they don’t have to travel far to get to a safety.

“Just this week and last week we had several tornados come through Alabama,” Grimsley said. “We just need to make sure to protect our citizens and give them the opportunity to protect themselves. When there is bad weather that comes through it will give them the opportunity to live through these terrible times.”

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