Advance warning is the most powerful preparedness tool for severe weather. Every family should have multiple methods for receiving severe weather alerts, including at least one with an audible alert to wake you in the middle of the night if necessary.
There are many options for staying in touch with changing weather conditions:
- NOAA Weather Radio: Watches and Warnings issued by National Weather Service (NWS) air on these radios.
- County Alert Systems: Some counties use outdoor warning sirens while others may use a telephone notification system. Contact your local EMA director to find out what warning system is used.
- Television Stations: Local or national news stations monitor and broadcast weather alerts.
- AM/FM Radio: Radio stations are required to air Emergency Alert System (EAS) messages.
- Smartphone Applications: Numerous free and paid smartphone applications have been created to notify the public of severe weather. Some of these applications use GPS tracking on your phone and will notify you of severe weather warnings based upon your location.
- Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA): WEA are emergency messages sent by authorized government alerting authorities through your mobile carrier. The alert system requires no need to download an app nor subscribe to a service. The WEA message will usually provide the category and time, the agency issuing the alert and what action you should take.