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Crawford County holds storm spotter class - KOAM TV 7

Crawford County holds storm spotter class

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When it comes to storm chasing it's important to be prepared, and some say, the best way to do that is through storm spotting classes. Southeast Kansas residents and emergency responders got an in depth lesson in spotting storms.

Not everyone can have access to the high tech weather equipment like Nick and Doug, But, when a storm strikes...the best way to be prepared is to listen.

"The most important type of spotter for the national weather service is the tactical spotter. And those are the law enforcement  officials, the volunteer fire officials here in Crawford county that are responsible for going outside the city limits, out on the field, and out actually spotting storms as they approach from the west of the south." says Doug Cramer from the National Weather Service.

Dozens of first responders from Crawford County gathered in Pittsburg for a severe weather training course, as they do every year, only this time, the course was designed with them in mind.

"Firefighters aren't really busy to do the stuff, so if you get some general public and some volunteers out there to do the stuff and it can really help out the cities and stuff by getting ready for a tornado." says Trace Buckle, a volunteer firefighter with Crawford County District 4 Fire Protection.

He became a volunteer firefighter just two weeks ago, and he says it's important for him to be prepared for all emergency aspects.

"I hope to learn a whole bunch about the new weather and see what kind of weather I can look for." Buckle says.

One of the key components to becoming a tactical storm spotter is having the tools right at your fingertips...The KOAM and Fox 14 Skywatch weather app holds all the tools that you need, including one of the key components you need to becoming a storm spotter, radar.

Other tools Cramer recommends using are police scanners, and chat rooms designed for weather spotters.

"If we utilize all 3 tools together, we're able to make sound decisions on when it comes to alarming the public of what type of hazardous weather is coming into southeast Kansas, including Crawford County." Cramer says.

The National Weather Service will be holding additional classes in our neighboring counties in the future.

In Jasper County, a class will be held at Missouri Southern at the Criminal Justice Auditorium, 3950 E. Newman Rd on February 24th, 6:30 p.m. A class will also be held in Cherokee County on the same date, location to be determined.

In Newton and McDonald counties - a class will be held on March 3rd at 6:30 p.m.

To learn more click the link here or copy and paste this link into your browser:
http://www.crh.noaa.gov/sgf/?n=spotter_classes_index

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