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Main Project Information
Presented By NOAA
Goal Help forecasters determine what severe storms will do next
Task Report real-time weather data for "ground-truth" forecasts.
Where United States of America

SKYWARN is a national network of over 300,000 volunteer weather spotters that is managed by NOAA's National Weather Service. The spotters are trained by one of the 122 local National Weather Service Forecast Offices on how to spot severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, hail, and flooding. In some parts of the country, spotters also report snowfall and ice accumulation.

During hazardous weather, such as severe thunderstorms, floods, tornadoes, snow and ice storms, SKYWARN volunteers report what is happening at their location. They are asked to report whenever certain criteria are met such as when one inch of rain has fallen, four inches of snow is on the ground, a thunderstorm is producing hail, or trees have been blown down.

How to Join

SKYWARN volunteers people who either have a strong interest in weather or are public service oriented. Our spotters are all ages beginning as young as 14 and range well into retirement age. We have farmers, pilots, engineers, home makers, lawyers, television cameramen, teachers, students, firemen, and more. While most SKYWARN volunteers are members of the general public, there is a core group that are licensed amateur radio operators.

If you are interested in learning more about this program, visit:

There is an online training course available at:

Weather Spotters Field Guide:

Required Gear:
Training in hazardous weather either in person or online, access to a phone

Social Media
Ideal Age Group College, Graduate students, Adults
Spend the Time outdoors
Type of Activity In snow or rain, Emergency Response, At home
Media Mentions
and Publications
Tags at home, climate & weather, diaster, emergency response, forecast, in snow or rain, national weather service, noaa, response, weather
Project Updated 05/23/2018