Preparing for severe weather – Mid-Iowa Skywarn Association

Taken from the MISA Operating Manual

Spotters are encouraged to stay abreast of weather forecasts throughout the year to be prepared for the possible activation of Skywarn on any given day. In today’s technologically driven society, weather information is available through a wide source of media and internet sources.

A good source of current and forecast weather information is your local NOAA Weather Radio Station. Most of Iowa is now covered by at least one NOAA Weather Radio Station. Frequencies for NOAA Weather Radio stations in Iowa can be found on the NWS web site.

The National Weather Service web site is another excellent source of forecasts, severe weather outlooks and other information. The Des Moines NWS web site is located at http://www.weather.gov/dmx.

Each day, the NWS issues a “Hazardous Weather Outlook” highlighting the potential for severe weather within the 51-county warning area during the next 24 hours, plus the potential for severe weather later in the forecast period. In addition, a “Spotter Information Statement” is often included addressing the possibility of spotter activation during the period. The Hazardous Weather Outlook can be found on the NWS web page, and is often broadcast on NOAA Weather Radio as well.

Spotters are strongly encouraged to monitor NOAA Weather Radio, internet, media and other sources when there is a threat of severe weather on a given day. Furthermore, spotters are encouraged to monitor local amateur radio net frequencies and be prepared for possible net activation when there is a high potential for severe weather.