National Weather Service announces new public alert system for severe weather
| 09.19.2007 | 08:29:42 | Views: 3600 | ID:
September 19, '07: A new severe weather emergency alert system, developed by the National Weather Service, will go online October 1 to help provide more geographically-sensitve data to the public about the specific locations of storms, the Associated Press reported. "Known as storm-based warning, the new alerts could reduce a warning area from thousands of square miles to a few hundred square miles," the AP reported according to weather experts.
Specifically, "the weather service plans to issue warning for specific storms and alert people who might be in the path. On a radar map, the warned areas appear as highlighted polygons rather than entire counties; forecasters will refer to commonly know landmarks like rivers and roads in written announcements," the AP reported.Eli Jacks, a meteorologist with the NWS in Washington D.C. told the AP, "A storm-based warning focuses on a storm itself and the geographic area that might be affected by it. ... We can really reduce the number of people being warned by reducing that geographic area." In addition to being more targeted, the new system will also save about $100 million annually, "mainly be cutting back on unneeded business closings and the amount of time people spend huddled in closets or basements during warnings," the AP paraphrased from a report by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The new system was field-tested with the help local Indiana emergency managers near the Indianapolis area.
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