Mar 5, 2024 - Culture

Marvel's Ironheart is preparing Chicago for emergencies

Side by side comic strips of RiRi Williams with a radio and Ironheart flying through sky.

Comic strips of Riri Williams and Ironheart with preparedness messages. Photo courtesy of City of Chicago.

Marvel's homegrown hero Riri Williams, aka Ironheart, is telling Chicagoans what to do in an emergency, especially ahead of tornado season.

The big picture: It's part of the city's Office of Emergency Management and Communications (OEMC) National Weather Preparedness week, which coincides with several emergency drills.

  • The city's 30-second emergency siren test will sound today at 10am (as it does the first Tuesday of every month).

Between the lines: Illinois had a record 120 tornadoes in 2023, according to WBEZ.

  • Historically, tornado season starts April 1.

State of play: OEMC is featuring Ironheart comics throughout the city and on social media as part of an emergency preparedness campaign aiming to capture the attention of younger Chicagoans.

  • Chicago poet Eve Ewing wrote Marvel's solo series debut of Ironheart.

Worthy of your time: National Weather Service's tips for tornadoes, which recommend:

  • Making sure everyone in your home or business knows where safe shelter is and how to communicate with one another
  • Seeking shelter on the lowest level of a home or building, away from windows
  • If you're driving, going to the closest sturdy shelter and never seeking shelter under a bridge
  • And after a tornado, avoiding downed power and gas lines
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