Breakdown: How you play an important role during severe weather

How you play an important role during severe weather

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Let’s face it, storms are apart of life in the Mid-South. As we transition from winter to spring, or fall to winter, we prepare for the inevitable storms that come along with them, but did you know that you, the community member, play an important role when it comes to storms?

In this episode of the breakdown, we will explain how you can help meteorologists when it comes to storms both through storm spotting and social media.

Damage in Arkansas
Damage in Arkansas (Source: WMC Action News 5)

In most years, thunderstorms, tornadoes, and lightning caused hundreds of injuries and deaths and billions of dollars in property and crop damages.

In a way to better obtain weather information, the National Weather Service (NWS) established SKYWARN with partner organizations. This volunteer program has between 350,000 and 400,000 trained service weather spotters that help keep local communities safe by providing reports of severe weather to the NWS.

On average the United States experiences more than 10,000 severe thunderstorms, 5,000 floods and more than 1,000 tornadoes per year.

Spotters help provide information for all types of weather, but SKYWARN helps identify and describe severe local storms.

To find out more information about the SKYWARN program, you can contact your local NWS Office to see when the next SKYWARN spotter class will take place in your area. NWS Memphis SKYWARN Schedule.

Not only are storm spotters essential when it comes to storm reports, social media has become an ever important tool when storms strike.

Social media can share critical weather information to build a weather-ready nation. By connecting with local meteorologists online, it can provide access to damage photos and areas that are seeing weather that has taken place in your area.

Social media is just one of the many ways to gain information, not only for local meteorologists but for the public as well. Just make sure your information is coming from a credible source, like the First Alert Weather Team or the National Weather Service Office.

Together, we can make sure everyone stays safe during and after the storm.

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