SKYWARN Training

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Supplement your B.S.A. Hazardous Weather Training with the free National Weather Service’s SKYWARN training. (Rick Jameson suggested this after reading Ten Causes of Scouting Disasters in the Wild – thanks Rick!)

To obtain critical weather information, NOAA’s National Weather Service established SKYWARN®, a volunteer program with nearly 290,000 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..

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.

Who is Eligible?

NWS encourages anyone with an interest in public service and access to communication, such HAM radio, to join the SKYWARN® program. Volunteers include police and fire personnel, dispatchers, EMS workers, public utility workers and other concerned private citizens. Individuals affiliated with hospitals, schools, churches, nursing homes or who have a responsibility for protecting others are also encouraged to become a spotter.

How Can I Get Involved?

NWS has 122 local Weather Forecast Offices, each with a Warning Coordination Meteorologist, who is responsible for administering the SKYWARN® program in their local area.  Classes are free and typically are about two hours long. To find a class in your area: start here

Patch-spotter Once you are certified you can even buy a patch! (or decal, or hat or tee shirt)



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