If a tornado picks you up, the first thing you'll want to do is calm yourself down. Then, get under a sturdy piece of furniture that will help protect you from falling debris.
You should also cover your head and neck as much as possible. This will help you survive a few debris hits and prevent you from getting seriously hurt.
The wind inside a tornado can suck air out of your lungs, so be very careful about where you hide! If you do not have a sturdy shelter nearby, lie flat in a ditch or depression and shield your head with your hands.
Do not stay in a mobile home manufactured before 1976 during a tornado, as these are the most vulnerable to high winds. Instead, seek shelter in a nearby building, preferably one with a basement.
Avoid vehicles and other structures, like bridges or overpasses, during a tornado. Tornadoes can be pushed under these objects, and can easily kill or injure anyone trying to take shelter in them.
Aside from the risk of being killed or severely injured by debris, people in vehicles are at a higher risk of drowning during a tornado because of their height and speed.
For this reason, it is always a good idea to have your emergency plans ready before you hear that there is a tornado in your area. All schools, shopping malls, nursing homes, stadiums, offices, sports arenas and mobile home communities should have well-designed tornado safety plans in place with signs that direct everyone to safe shelter areas away from windows.