Tell us about your Skywarn group?

Jun 9, 2005
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West,Tx
Visit site
Although I'm not a member of this club, I do know one of the officers, and have met several of the members. Whenever severe weather is in the area and they open the weather net, they allow me to sign in and help them out. I've talked with some of the guys in the group, and we're talking about forming our own chase group. This is their club website, not a skywarn site because they don't have one.

www.hotarc.org.
 
Apr 10, 2008
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Wisconsin
www.proalert.us
I'm in charge of the group here in the Lansing Area and keep up the website at http://www.lansingarpsc.com. Unfortunately some of the folks still get too excited and say/do stupid things.

Best report of the last 12 months: "It's raining lumber, shingles and insulation!" from our very own rdale on 8/24/07. :)

As long as humans are in the equation, stupid things will happen.
But then it gives us a point of reference from which to improve
and allows to grin every now and then.

Good website too, well organized and it appears you have an active group
there.

Tim:)
 

Jason Foster

Sterling, VA (LWX)

Not crazy about the program, organizers, etc. associated with the Washington, DC area FO (Sterling, Virginia...aka LWX).

There is a lot of anti-chaser mentality there. The nets are fun OK, but there is too much tolerance for "rain" reports, or "the airport has delays". That does seem to be changing.

However, it seems that they are allowing more and more of the Office of Emergency Managements to get in a feel they control the Skywarn program in their jurisdiction....certainly seems the case with Montgomery County, MD. One of the Emer. Mgmt. Officers during a Skywarn basics class noted that it was a storm chaser who died in Iowa (not a Fireman). When I made the attempt to correct the statement I took heat from the Skywarn coordinator and others, who sent many angry and belittling emails about storm chasers.

It seems yet again, politics, and bias opinions run the roost here in the DC area.

This is in addition to my opinion of poor quality of the basics classes, non-existent Advance, Flood, and Hurricane classes. Class times are usually during the week, and are held in poor locations. Training of the amateur radio operates on reporting procedures seems to be lacking, and there is only a handful of available net control operators. The office seems to be thinking that around the DC area there is a saturation of members, however, most nets lack reports as do the summary discussions after the event.

So for the time being I give them an unsatisfactory grade in my book. But that is based solely on my opinion and experience.
 
Apr 10, 2008
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Wisconsin
www.proalert.us
"Training of the amateur radio operates on reporting procedures seems to be lacking"

Depends on the group.

Some have meetings and train their people and make Skywarn work for them
and their community.

Some groups never have meetings or further training and many
get caught up in a power trip or struggle.

As with anything, you have good ones and you have bad ones.

We work well with our county EMs and with the WFO...not saying
there is never a rough patch, but we seem to work things out.

Tim
 
Jan 5, 2008
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DFW-Dallas/FortWorth
Parker Co. Tx SkyWarn and Tarrant Co. SkyWarn

Dear all

I am part of the Parker co. Tx Skywarn group and I can tell you that we do have a info net that meets I believe its the first Mon night of each month. Our training net meets on the second mon night of each month and we do a Great job both on training and working the net during any kind of threating or severe weather. Now Tarrant Co. is a different story Tarrant meets on the first Mon night of each month and I believe there training net is on the Third Thurs of each month. check these links for frequencies and more info. Parker always welcomes new members and so does Tarrant but remember with Tarrant if R.A.C.E.S is activated then you must be a Races member to participate. Parker is not as formal but we do keep the net kind of strict when severe weather is in the area.



kBrews Storm Spotting Frequencies - For Parker CO. and Tarrant

www.tarrantraces.org/- Tarrant Co. R.A.C.E.S



Sincerely


Shawn C.
 
May 22, 2007
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Burnsville, MN
K0MPX Skywarn

In the MPX CWA, we do things a little differently than in other places that I've worked with. Each county/town/community/(insert geographical feature here) has and operates its own spotting group. The leader of that group is subscribed to an e-mail list that the K0MPX coordinators use to communicate with them. Communications on this list include a severe weather outlook for the day as well as a note about possible activations, a message indicating that radio operations are commencing at the NWS, and when operations secure. Spotter training is provided by the NWS outside of the Twin Cities Metro Area with the Metro Skywarn organization providing training within the Metro. I think our setup works well and we are able to communicate with a good portion of our CWA, which has a large east-west expanse. Our website doesn't have too much on it, but some of the various spotter groups have thier own which provide good information.
 

Joe Dorn

EF2
Feb 27, 2005
129
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Belton, Texas
Central Texas SKYWARN Groups

Although I'm not a member of this club, I do know one of the officers, and have met several of the members. Whenever severe weather is in the area and they open the weather net, they allow me to sign in and help them out. I've talked with some of the guys in the group, and we're talking about forming our own chase group. This is their club website, not a skywarn site because they don't have one.

www.hotarc.org.
I have just seen this note.

Central Texas does not have club like SKYWARN groups but rather open nets available to all who wish to participate. McLennan County (HOTARC) has an active weather net as does Bosque and Lampassas Counties.

The largest net is the Central Texas Amateur Radio net on the wide area 147.140 (pl 123) repeater with primary coverage of about 15 counties and partial coverage of another 5. We normally have Echolink connections to the NWS in Fort Worth during major events.

There is great cooperation and an exchange of reports between the different nets.

The make up of the Central Texas nets is rather loose because of the rural nature of a lot of the area, Once you get away from the IH-35 strip you are into farming and ranching country with a low 'ham' density. Gary Woodall, the FTW severe weather met, presents SKYWARN training to all of the counties in the CWA every year with a strong emphasis on amateur radio as the preferred reporting tool.

Gary's support and the availability of the wide area repeater has generated an effective net that covers most of Central Texas, north of Austin and South the DFW metro areas. When a significant system is working its way through the area the nets are long, time wise, as we track the system over a 140 mile swarth.

We have several net control operators that have access to the GR and Allison House products. We encourage the use of APRS trackers for the mobile spotters and chasers.

I maintain a list of hams that have participated over the past several years and it has over a 150 names on it including Cris Lott whose note I am responding to. The meteorological expertise varies from very little to advanced chasers. The net control operators sort out and control the data passed to FTW.

Unlike the DFW and some Austin area nets, transients are welcome to make reports through our repeater.

We have recently started a weekly net on Thursday's at 8:00 pm during CDT and 7:00 pm during CST. If you can hear the repeater you are welcome to join in.
 
Oct 10, 2006
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Fort Worth, Texas
This is in response to Joe Dorns' comment. As one of the radio operators at the NWSO in Fort Worth, I would like to compliment the work that is done by the Central Texas Net, as their "ground truth" reports are timely and informative. One thing that Joe does not mention is that they not only serve a large number of counties, but they also provide time, money and resources in training and building repeaters and EchoLink / IRLP nodes in those areas that are in need of communication links. When I first started as a radio op, the south end of the NWS CWA (the Central Texas area) was always a "gray area". Within a few short years it has become a resource that we depend on very heavily. We are highly appreciative of all that the Central Texas Net has done. I'm sure Joe and his team would share their wisdom with anyone that requested it.

Greg Higgins, KB5GLV
 

Joe Dorn

EF2
Feb 27, 2005
129
0
5
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Belton, Texas
This is in response to Joe Dorns' comment. As one of the radio operators at the NWSO in Fort Worth, I would like to compliment the work that is done by the Central Texas Net, as their "ground truth" reports are timely and informative. One thing that Joe does not mention is that they not only serve a large number of counties, but they also provide time, money and resources in training and building repeaters and EchoLink / IRLP nodes in those areas that are in need of communication links. When I first started as a radio op, the south end of the NWS CWA (the Central Texas area) was always a "gray area". Within a few short years it has become a resource that we depend on very heavily. We are highly appreciative of all that the Central Texas Net has done. I'm sure Joe and his team would share their wisdom with anyone that requested it.

Greg Higgins, KB5GLV
WOW!!!

Thanks Greg, from all of our group...

We are proud of what we have done... Big Grin...

BTW, a lot of the spotters were recently invoked in various activities, other than radio, in support of the evacuees from Ike. Several of us put in multiple 15+ hour days...
 
Our local group is about a dozen active amatuer radio operators with one usually running net control from our local EMA building. The net control operator works closely with the NWS office in Indianapolis to put us where needed.

Of course the net control operater has a full complment of tools including GRLevel3, detailed county maps, and back up power. They net control office is down in the basement of a study building which was designated as a bomb shelter at one time.

Usually other hams will participate too but not always reguarly.

One person of note is our long time spotter who was part of the military which sat up the early warning typoon network in the pacific during the 50s. He said it was a great thing to help be a part of and the best part he always says was the private hut and no other duties.
 
May 17, 2006
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Rigby,ID
www.severeidaho.com
Before I moved to Idaho I was part of the Southern California "Orange County Skywarn" group. They had a website with Activation info and also the frequency they operated from. Now that I live in Idaho I do miss being part of a group. The only Spotter info you can find here is on the NWS Pocatello website. I would love to start a group here and website but have no clue where to start. I do know the Warning Coordinator so I am sure I can ask the questions but in reality the only time I chat with other Spotters is at our Yearly meetings which I do look forward to alot.