Fall River County hosted a weather spotter class at the South Annex building last Wednesday, April 3rd. The 2 hour class focused on serving the public through severe weather spotting and concise communication to local authorities.
Abstract from the National Weather Service:
"In most years, thunderstorms, tornadoes and lightning caused hundreds of injuries and deaths and billions in property and crop damages. To obtain critical weather information, the National Weather Service (NWS) established SKYWARN® with partner organizations."
SKYWARN® is a volunteer program with between 350,000 and 400,000 trained severe weather spotters. These volunteers help keep their local communities safe by providing timely and accurate reports of severe weather to the National Weather Service."
Although SKYWARN® spotters provide essential information for all types of weather hazards, the main responsibility of a SKYWARN® spotter is to identify and describe severe local storms."
In an average year, the United States experiences more than 10,000 severe thunderstorms, 5,000 floods and more than 1,000 tornadoes."
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Since the program started in the 1970s, the information provided by SKYWARN® spotters, coupled with Doppler radar technology, improved satellite and other data, has enabled NWS to issue more timely and accurate warnings for tornadoes, severe thunderstorms and flash floods."
SKYWARN® storm spotters are citizens who form the nation's first line of defense against severe weather. There can be no finer reward than to know that their efforts have given communities the precious gift of time—seconds and minutes that can help save lives."
For those who could not make it to last Wednesday's class, the NWS provides free online courses to certify those interested.
Visit https://www.weather.gov/SKYWARN for more information.