Skywarn consists of a network of severe storm spotters who observe weather conditions and make reports of severe weather to their local NWS offices. ... These spotters are regularly trained by personnel from the local NWS offices.
No. The majority of SKYWARN spotters are ham radio operators BUT, it is not required. You can make reports using a phone app, a computer, or by calling the NWS directly. We do provide Ham radio testing for those interested. Details on becoming a ham radio operator can be found at WWW.NGVET.ORG
Yes, to be a trained or certified spotter you are required to take the storm spotter courses as well as the spotter network quiz in order to get your official spotter ID number. However, citizens who are not certified are allowed to participate but are not allowed to identify as certified spotters. Certification is easy and outlined in detail on our spotter training page.
Yes! You get a spotter certificate when you finish your comet/metar training and another from the NWS when you finish your virtual or in person NWS training.
No. We are a volunteer organization that needs your help. If you say that you have passed a certification level, we take you at your word! If for some unknown reason a person would lie about such a thing, it would become painfully obvious when the untrained spotter began to provide reports while not following spotter protocols.
The training modules will outline what and how to report things. "it's really windy over here in Moreland" is NOT a needed report. "I had Dime sized hail that fell for 12 minutes starting at 3:45 pm on Smith road in Sharpsburg, GA." IS a desired report.