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Right off the heels of last week (March 2-8) being declared Severe Weather Preparedness Week by the National Weather Service (NWS), an upcoming training seminar will be held locally to bring awareness on storm spotting.
The Nolan County Skywarn Storm Spotter Training will be held on Monday, March 17 at 6 p.m. at the Sweetwater campus of Texas State Technical College West Texas, in Conference Room 120 in the Temple Dickson Building. This annual event, which has been held for the past few years at the Sweetwater-Nolan County Health Department, has changed venues this year due to the continued interest and growth.
The event is being hosted by the Nolan County Amateur Radio Association (NCARA). According to Gary Armstrong with the NCARA, the group was formed in 1995.
The organization is made up of certified storm spotters, in which they operate a radio system which is connected to the NWS. And in times of severe weather, the NCARA offers up-to-date information to the NWS as a means of assistance.
The NWS of San Angelo conducts the advanced training course, teaching participants on how to obtain information, stay up-to-date with the weather, and offers in-depth information on old and new products. The San Angelo office holds the training in various counties, spreading out the seminars over a few months.
With storm spotter season recently opened, Armstrong said the potential for bad weather is already around. One of the biggest concerns stressed in the training is safety, especially after last year's storm season where two prevalent storm chasers were killed in Oklahoma.
Armstrong wants the training to let people know that the potential for a dangerous situation exists everywhere. In addition, he hopes the training will get people involved so that weather warnings can get out as soon as possible.
Furthermore, Armstrong hopes that those who annually attend the training will walk away having learned something new. Law enforcement, fire departments, amateur radio operators, anyone involved in public safety and the general public is invited to attend.
For more information on the Nolan County Skywarn Storm Spotter Training, contact Armstrong at 325-235-4110.