The week of April 28 through May 4 is Severe
Weather Awareness week in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. During the week, National Weather
Service Offices will provide audio presentations on how you can be prepared this season for
severe weather. This presentation will focus on the best methods to receive the most up-to-date
weather information if severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, or flash floods impact your area.
In today’s digital world, weather warnings can be received by NOAA Weather Radio, email,
cell phones, Internet, and commercial radio and television. It is best to use multiple
means of getting weather warnings. NOAA Weather Radio is broadcast on frequencies
ranging from 162.40 MHz to 162.55 MHz. This frequency range is just above the normal FM
radio band. Special NOAA weather radio receivers can be purchased. Many multi band radios and
scanners also include the NOAA weather radio frequencies. You can check for your nearest
transmitter at weather.gov/nwr. Email and cell phone alerts…You can subscribe
to email or text message weather alerts through a variety of providers listed on the Internet.
The Wireless Emergency Alert and Interactive NWS are two examples of message alerts. Note
that the iNWS is designed specifically for emergency managers, community leaders, and
other government agencies. However, WEA, or Wireless Emergency Alerts, is free and automatic
– there’s no need to sign up or download an app. As long as your cell phone is WEA-capable,
you’ll get wireless alerts for the most dangerous types of weather from NOAA’s National
Weather Service no matter where you are, just as soon as the new service is available in
your area. Contact your cell phone company for specific details.
Internet: Warnings are available using graphics and text at weather.gov…and also from many
commercial Internet weather providers. National Weather Services also provide graphical weather
stories to highlight the main impacts from a storm.
Follow your local and favorite National Weather Service offices via Facebook, YouTube and
Twitter. Many volunteer weather spotters frequently provide photos and storm reports on Facebook
and Twitter. (Play EAS audio) Commercial radio and television
use the Emergency Alert System…EAS…to receive and relay weather warnings from the
National Weather Service and all hazards information from government officials. The EAS system
is tested on a weekly and monthly basis. The National Weather Service also conducts tests
on the NOAA weather radio usually on Wednesday morning.
This week is severe weather awareness week in the Pacific Northwest. Now is the time
to get prepared for thunderstorms, tornadoes, and flash floods. From the NWS offices at Seattle, Spokane,
Portland, Pendleton, Medford, Boise, Pocatello, and Missoula…thank you for listening!