Tag: NWS

2013 SKYWARN Storm Spotter Training

Krissy Scotten, Warning Coordination Meteorologist NWS AMA, will be presenting a SKYWARN certification class for the PARC ARES group on Tuesday February 5th at 19:00 at the AES Building located at 1900 Line Avenue in Amarillo, TX. This class will be open to the public. If you are unable to attend the SKYWARN Training scheduled for our ARES meeting, the 2013 Spotter Training Schedule is available here.

SKYWARN is the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service’s (NWS) severe weather spotting program with nearly 290,000 trained volunteers nationwide. Since the late 1960s, trained SKYWARN spotters have helped support the NWS’ primary mission of protecting life and property through the issuance of severe weather warnings. These dedicated citizens help keep their local community safe by conveying severe weather reports to their local NWS Forecast Office. SKYWARN spotters are integral to the success of our Nation’s severe weather warning system.

Every year the NWS conducts SKYWARN spotter training sessions. The NWS currently has 122 Weather Forecast Offices across the nation, each with a Warning Coordination Meteorologist, who is responsible for administering the SKYWARN program in their local area. There is no charge and a typical class takes about 2 hours to conduct.

Storm Spotter certification is required every two years, but please consider attending this class even if your certification has not expired. If you are not currently a SKYWARN spotter and you are interested in joining our volunteer group you are welcome to attend this training as well.

SKYWARN® is a registered trademark of NOAA’s National Weather Service.  Rules for the usage of the SKYWARN name and logo are available here.

For more information about SKYWARN, please click here.

If you are interested in joining ARES, please click here.

If you are interested in Amateur Radio, please click here.

 


SKYWARN Recognition Day 12/2/2011

SKYWARN Recognition Day was developed in 1999 by the National Weather Service (NWS) and the American Radio Relay League (ARRL). It celebrates the contributions that volunteer SKYWARN amateur radio operators make to the NWS. For a 24-hour period, SKYWARN operators visit NWS offices and contact other radio operators across the world.

This is a fun contest, an opportunity to get to know the NWS personnel, and an excellent opportunity for fellowship with other SKYWARN hams. In years past, the NWS office has graciously provided pizza, doughnuts, cake and snacks.

The 2011 edition of SKYWARN Recognition Day will occur on 12/3/2011 from 0000Z to 2359Z (Local time will be Friday December 2nd at 6:00 P.M. until Saturday December 3rd at 6:00 P.M. CDST).

CLICK HERE to register to volunteer for the SRD Special Event!


Scouting for Meteorologists (and Hams) 2011-Amarillo

Scouting for Meteorologists is an annual outreach program sponsored by the National Weather Service in Amarillo for Girl Scouts of the Texas Oklahoma Plains and the Boy Scouts of the Golden Spread Council who are interested in weather as a career or hobby. Scouts are invited to become “Meteorologists for a Day” and to meet and interact with meteorologists from different segments of the career field such as television, emergency management, storm spotters, and the National Weather Service.

Scouts will have an opportunity to:

  • Generate a forecast or a warning
  • Participate in a severe weather simulation
  • Create a brief TV weather broadcast
  • Provide weather support during a emergency incident
  • Experiment with weather models
  • Learn the concepts of storm spotting and Amateur (Ham) Radio
  • Prepare for a career in meteorology

 

Where: National Weather Service 1900 English Road, Amarillo, TX, 79108

When: Saturday March 26th, 2011 1300-1700

Last year us SKYWARN Storm Spotters set up a booth in our corner of the NWS office and distributed amateur radio literature and gave an informative presentation to the scouts to show them what we do. We also gave them a chance to sit in a real live storm spotter truck, and play with the lightbar, wear hardhats and talk on a ham radio. Second to the weather balloon launch, the storm spotter presentation was a real favorite for the scouts. this is a great opportunity for us to provide a community service, support the scouts and the National Weather Service, and an opportunity to spark some potential interest in the amateur radio hobby for some of these kids who may be future community service volunteers.

We’re going to let the kids wear hard-hats and reflective ARES vests while they throw plastic practice golf balls at the truck as others sit inside the truck and report a simulated hail storm over ham radio!

To help with the Amateur (Ham) Radio/SKYWARN portion of this event, please Send me some mail! or call 806-231-4227

Chris Seright, KE5ZRT


2011 SEVERE WEATHER CONFERENCE, Amarillo

Amarillo Civic Center March 19, 2011

Booths: 9AM-12:30PM

General Session: 12:30PM-4PM

Spotter Training: 4:30PM-6:30PM


Storm Reports via Twitter

 You can now submit your significant weather observations to the National Weather Service (NWS) via Twitter.

Everyone talks about the weather.  Now’s your chance to “tweet” it and be heard.  Through an experimental program, the National Weather Service will be searching for tweets that contain significant weather information.

Why Twitter?

An advantage of searching Twitter for weather reports is the capability to utilize recently added “geotagging” — geographical information that is associated with something, in this case individual Tweets.  This allows the NWS to correlate each Tweet to its location when it was sent.  This capability will help to enhance and increase timely and accurate online weather reporting and communication between the public and their local weather forecast offices.  The reports will be carefully evaluated during the experiment to ensure quality and timeliness.

Who Can Participate?

Anyone with a Twitter account can participate.  Note: Trained storm spotters should use pre-established communication methods (Amateur Radio, toll-free line, eSpotter, etc.), when possible, to send severe weather reports to the NWS–although Twitter reports (photos) may be useful in addition to pre-established methods.

Here’s What You Need to Do:

If Geotagging is available on your 3rd party Twitter application:

  1. Make sure geotagging is turned on for your 3rd party Twitter app.
  2. Make sure geotagging is turned on for your Twitter account page.
  3. Submit your Tweet report via your 3rd party app in the following format:
    #wxreport your significant weather report

Some examples of weather report tweets with geotagging:

Ex. 1:   #wxreport 6.0″ of new snow as of 1 pm
Ex. 2:   #wxreport Hail 3/4 inch in diameter at 4:25 pm

If Geotagging is NOT available on your 3rd party Twitter application (or you want to use the web-based Twitter.com):

  1. Log into your Twitter account via the web or mobile device.
  2. Submit your tweet report in the following format:
    #wxreport  WW  your location WW  your significant weather report
  3. Your location can be just about anything, but the more specific the better.  Here are some examples listed from most accurate to least accurate location identification:
    • Most accurate–A latitude and longitude:
      WW 44.231, -88.485 WW
    • An address:
      WW 2485 S Point Rd, Green Bay, WI 54313 WW
    • A street intersection:
      WW intersection of Holly St and N 4th St, Perry, OK WW
    • A city name:
      WW Ft Lauderdale, FL WW
    • Least accurate–A zip code:
      WW 53221 WW

Some examples of weather report tweets without geotagging:

Ex. 1:   #wxreport WW 1289 W Oakridge Circle, St Louis, MO WW 6.0″ new snow as of 1 pm
Ex. 2:   #wxreport WW 44.115, -88.595 WW Hail 3/4 inch in diameter at 4:25 pm

What You Can Report

You can tweet any weather event that occurs in your local area, but we are most interested in significant events: snowfall, severe weather, flooding, etc.  In particular:

  • Damage from winds–briefly describe what was damaged and time it occurred.
  • Hail–include size of hail and time it fell.
  • Tornadoes or funnel clouds.
  • Flooding–briefly describe what is occurring.
  • Snowfall during an event and storm total.  When reporting snowfall, include the time period when it fell.
  • Freezing rain or freezing drizzle producing a ‘glaze’ on objects or roads.
  • Dense fog restricting visibility to less than a half mile.

Additional Guidance

Frequently Asked Questions

  • The purpose of this project is to allow people to submit reports.  Please be responsible and respectful of the purpose.
  • Be as specific as possible when describing the weather report.
  • A valid Twitter user account is required to submit reports.  As such, use of this service constitutes an agreement to the terms of service of the provider. Go to: http://twitter.com/tos for more information
  • Interested in displaying tweets from the project on your own web page? The files you need are contained here (zip). See the “readme.txt” file included for more information.

Monitoring Your Reports

The following external (non-NWS) links will monitor #wxreport tweets (click the links below):

Note: Some #wxreport monitoring websites that plot the weather report on a map may not properly plot tweets that use the “WW” location tag.

If you have any questions or suggestions for the program, please contact Corey Pieper — corey.pieper@noaa.gov


12th Annual SKYWARN Recognition Day 2010

Update/Clarification: This event is Friday December 3rd at 6:00 PM Central until Saturday December 4th at 6:00 PM Central.

The 12th Annual SKYWARN Recognition Day (SRD) Special Event will take place Saturday, December 4, 2010. SRD is co-sponsored by the ARRL and the National Weather Service (NWS) as a way to recognize the commitment made by Amateur Radio operators in helping to keep their communities safe. During SRD, Amateur Radio operators can visit their local participating NWS office, working as a team to contact other hams across the world throughout the 24 hour event.

For more information on the SKYWARN Recognition Day Event please visit the ARRL Website.

Click Here for a slideshow of the 2009 SRD Special Event at Amarillo!

Raymond Winter, W5RAW, has volunteered to bring in an operating station and logging software. We need an antenna or two–we might know someone with a very nice tower trailer! Also, we need operator pairs (loggers and operators) who can work in shifts to cover a 24-hour period. Terra and I will take the early, early, early morning shift (0400-0800) unless someone else wants it! This year the Amarillo NWS will design and print the QSL cards for us.

To volunteer to help out with the Amarillo SKYWARN Recognition Day Special Event, please contact:

Chris Seright, KE5ZRT
Send me some mail!
or call 806 231-4227
or Twitter: @chris_seright

 

Update/Clarification: This event is Friday December 3rd at 6:00 PM Central until Saturday 6:00 PM Central.


Decision Support Symposium–October 26th and 27th, 2010

When:

October 26th and 27th, 2010.  Please register for the symposium using this link.

Where:

Amarillo Community College Polk Street Campus, Business and Industry Center.  Amarillo, Texas.  (DIRECTIONS)

What:

This year, the Decision Support Symposium will focus on a few themes:

  • Preparedness
    • How can the local NWS Office become better prepared to serve the decision making community?
    • How do decision makers prepare for high impact events, and what lessons can the NWS learn from these examples?
  • Relationships
    • What is the importance in building relationships with the various agencies involved in decision making?
    • How can we build these effective relationships?
  • Societal Impacts
    • How does the public respond during high impact events?
    • What can be done to illicit positive decisions/behaviors during these events?
  • Big Impacts In Small Places
    • What challenges face rural communities during high impact events?
    • How can the NWS better understand and provide for the needs of rural communities?

Why: 

To help National Weather Service Offices:

  • Build stronger relationships with the Decision Support Community
  • Provide improved Decision Support products and services
  • Develop a better understanding of roles in the Decision Support Community
  • Lay the foundation for future Decision Support products and services 

Also, to help our partners in the Decision Support Community:

  • Discuss their needs during high impact events 
  • Gain a better understanding of how the National Weather Service can be utilized for decision making
    • Learn what products and services the National Weather Service can provide
    • What we can provide now and in the future
  • Learn the roles of other agencies and how they respond during high impact events

How: 

By providing an open forum to discuss Decision Support services including: partner needs, societal impacts, lessons learned, effective communication techniques, and innovation.

Who:

The target audience are those in the Decision Support community including (but not limited to):

  • National Weather Service
  • Emergency Managers/County Judges
  • Forest Service/Fire Departments
  • Law Enforcement
  • Media
  • School Districts
  • Federal Aviation Administration
  • Department of Transportation/Public Works
  • Red Cross/Volunteer Disaster Agencies
  • BWXT Pantex

Speakers and Topics:

  • Tom Bradshaw-Meteorological Services Branch Chief, Southern Region Headquarters, Fort Worth: High Impact events across the southern region of the United States
  • Ken Grahm-Meteorologist in Charge, WFO Slidell (New Orleans): Supporting Deepwater Horizon
  • Kevin Starbuck-Potter/Randal County Emergency Management Coordinator: The Importance of Collocation During a High Impact Event
  • David Solis-Regional Liason Officer with the Texas Department of Public Safety
  • John Zeitler-Science and Operations Officer (SOO), WFO Austin/San Antonio: NWS Full Scale Simulations using the NASA Model
  • Darone Jones-Societal Impacts Program Manager, Western Region Headquarters, Salt Lake City: SAFER Concepts
  • Mark Strobin-Forecaster, WFO Monterey/San Francisco: Building Effective Relationships with the Coast Guard
  • Rich Okulski-Warning Coordination Meteorologist, WFO Memphis: Decision Support for the Beale Street Music Festival
  • Mike Chapman-Associate Scientist with Earth System Research Laboratory Global Systems Division of NCAR, Boulder, CO: Decision Support Systems for the Transportation Industry
  • John Brost-Forecaster, WFO Amarillo: Are We Ready? Results from a NWS Operational Forecaster Survey

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