4B.5 Connecting the Dots: A Communications Model of the North Texas Integrated Warning Team During the 15 May 2013 Tornado Outbreak

Monday, 3 November 2014: 5:30 PM
University (Madison Concourse Hotel)
Dennis E. Cavanaugh, NOAA/NWS Forecast Office, Fort Worth, TX; and M. Huffman, J. L. Dunn, and M. Fox
Manuscript (524.2 kB)

On 15 May 2013, 19 tornadoes occurred across North and Central Texas, killing 6, injuring over 50, and causing more than $100 million in property damage. The majority of the impacts to life and property were the direct result of EF-3 and EF-4 tornadoes that affected the communities of Cleburne and Granbury. An informal analysis of the North Texas Integrated Warning Team (IWT) was first conducted following the 3 April 2012 North Texas tornado outbreak, where no fatalities occurred despite several strong tornadoes affecting densely populated areas. This study focuses on a more formal examination of IWT communications through a thorough analysis of interactions between North Texas IWT members during the 15 May 2013 tornado outbreak. Communications from all members of the IWT were collected and organized so that a quantitative analysis of the IWT communications network could be performed for this event. The results of this analysis will be used to identify strengths and weaknesses of current IWT communications to improve the consistency of hazardous weather messaging for future high impact weather events. The analysis techniques outlined in this study could serve as a model for comprehensive studies of IWTs across the country.
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