Help the National Weather Service by becoming a SKYWARN storm spotter

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – ECU hosts a free SKYWARN® storm spotter class Thursday, March 17, 2016 at the Mendenhall Student Center, Room 221.

There will be two sessions: 9 – 11 am OR 1 – 3 pm (you only need to attend one)

To register, please visit:


With construction on the new student center, there is no convenient parking for the current student center. People with ECU parking permits should park in designated areas. There is no public parking on campus, but you are encouraged to utilize the free 2 hour parking downtown. It’s will be about a 10 minute walk to campus. Also, you can stop by the Parking & Transportation Office (305 East 10th Street, across from Krispy Kreme) to purchase a temporary parking pass for the day if needed.


Here are more details on the SKYWARN® storm spotter training program:

The effects of severe weather are felt every year by many Americans. To obtain critical weather information, NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, established SKYWARN® with partner organizations. SKYWARN® is 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.

Although SKYWARN® spotters provide essential information for all types of weather hazards, the main responsibility of a SKYWARN® spotter is to identify and describe severe local storms. In the average year, 10,000 severe thunderstorms, 5,000 floods and more than 1,000 tornadoes occur across the United States. These events threatened lives and property.

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 as 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. Training covers:


  • Basics of thunderstorm development
  • Fundamentals of storm structure
  • Identifying potential severe weather features
  • Information to report
  • How to report information
  • Basic severe weather safety


Classes are free and typically are about two hours long.

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