1.2 Weather Alerts and Emergency Management—Are We Crying Wolf?

Monday, 8 January 2018: 9:00 AM
Room 5ABC (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Eric Frank, Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency, Vancouver, WA

The relationship between local NWS experts and Emergency Management Professionals is an important partnership that should not be overlooked. Each year we see severe weather alerts put out in all regions of the country, in hopes of preparing and keeping individuals safe from severe weather.

However, understanding in detail what those alerts mean, and then properly recommending decisions based on those alerts is a fine balance. If we alert too often and nothing happens, or we do so properly and individuals take precautions with no serious incidents occurring, we overreacted. If we do nothing and incidents do occur, and individuals are injured or worse, we are blamed. To make matters worse, individuals compare current alerts against previous storm warnings and base their decisions not on information fully provided by professionals but their own judgements.

This talk will discuss the importance of having a well established relationship with your local NWS office from the Emergency Management viewpoint to ensure products and messages produced by both the NWS and the local Emergency Manager support and reinforce decisions guiding the response to the weather condition.

- Indicates paper has been withdrawn from meeting
- Indicates an Award Winner