Did You Know…
- that storm spotters were first used during WWII to alert the military artillery plants of approaching lightning?
- that after WWII spotter networks were maintained for military installations?
- that after the May 25, 1955 tornado in Udall, KS killed 80 people, the NWS decided to train their own severe weather spotters?
- that the first spotter training course was held March 8, 1959 in Wellington, KS for 225 weather spotters?
- that the Skywarn™ program was officially created in 1965?
- Basics of thunderstorm development
- Fundamentals of storm structure
- Identifying potential severe weather features
- Information to report
- How to report information
- Basic severe weather safety
- Go to: https://www.stormready.noaa.gov/contact.htm
- Once at your local WFO home page, in the blue bar on the left, look for the SKYWARN link to find a schedule of classes and other local information
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 the average year, 10,000 severe thunderstorms, 5,000 floods and more than 1,000 tornadoes occur across the United States. These events threatened lives and property.
SKYWARN® storm spotters are part of the ranks of 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.
Training and Resources