Anyone 12 years of age and older interested in learning about severe weather may attend this free training provided by the National Weather Service (NWS), Weather Forecast Office (WFO), Birmingham.
Registration for this course is required. Email Steve Swafford, County Administrator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 256.463.3822 to register. This is the only SKYWARN spotter class being hosted by the county EMA in the next 12 months.
SKYWARN is the NWS program of trained volunteer weather spotters. The information trained spotters report, along with Doppler radar, satellite, and other data, enables the NWS to issue the most timely and accurate warnings possible for tornado, severe thunderstorm, and flash flooding events.
The primary focus of the SKYWARN Basic Storm Spotter course is to train interested citizens, along with members of local law enforcement, fire & rescue, emergency medical services, public works, amateur radio operators, and others, SKYWARN procedures for safely spotting and reporting severe local storms and weather-based phenomena. This course does not encourage or teach spotters how to chase storms, but rather how to safely observe and report them.
Timely and accurate reporting of information is invaluable to NWS warning forecasters and their warning decision process. SKYWARN trained storm spotters provide the NWS with vital “ground truth” data and enables them to better carry out the NWS’s primary mission--save lives and property.