Poster Session P1.34 The NWS Southern Region grid preparation policy: making a difference

Monday, 25 June 2007
Summit C (The Yarrow Resort Hotel and Conference Center)
G. Clay Anderson, NOAA/NWS, New Braunfels, TX; and J. W. Zeitler

Handout (112.4 kB)

The NWS Southern Region implemented a policy in September, 2005, that prescribes how forecasters should initialize the gridded database used to produce routine forecasts for the National Digital Forecast Database. The major feature of this method is to populate the forecast database with Model Output Statistics based on the Global Forecast System 0000 and 1200 UTC model cycles, and make adjustments only when another guidance source is deemed far superior or when targets of opportunity are otherwise apparent. Several months earlier, in June, 2005, a similar policy was implemented at the WFO Austin/San Antonio, also with a focus on streamlining the forecast process and improving forecast verification. The positive results on forecast verification scores when compared to the Model Output Statistics, both for WFO Austin/San Antonio and for all Southern Region WFOs, shows that the policy provides an effective and efficient procedure for forecast improvement. In addition to the improvement in verification scores, the grid preparation time at WFO Austin/San Antonio was reduced from three or four hours to nearly two hours per major model cycle, -- a substantial time savings. In this presentation I will discuss the motivation behind the policy, describe the benefits realized by following the policy, and suggest recommendations for further improvement and future policy.

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