Texas Emergency Management ONLINE 2012 Vol. 59 No. 1

Creating A Weather Ready Nation

Texas Flash Flood Coalition

The National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has launched a comprehensive initiative to build a “weather-ready” nation to make America safer by saving more lives andprotecting livelihoods as communities across the country become increasingly vulnerable to severe weather events, such as tornado outbreaks, intense heat waves, flooding, active hurricane seasons, and winter and solar storms that threaten electrical and communication systems. 

In an attempt to save lives and protect communities, the National Weather Service has launched a major preparedness initiative called “Weather-Ready Nation.” The campaign was created due to increasing concern over the record level of disasters striking the United States in recent years.

During 2011, Texas was struck with an unprecedented heat wave, drought and a series of devastating wildfires. 2011 was the sixth deadliest tornado year in U.S. history with 536 fatalities. Wildfires in Texas alone claimed 4 million acres. And, while Texas burned, flooding along the Red River, Mississippi River and Missouri River caused billions of dollars in economic losses and destroyed lives.

The National Weather Service has coordinated with broadcast meteorologists, researchers, emergency managers, and the weather industry to take a hard look at what is happening and what can be done to increase public education, awareness and preparedness so that individuals and families will make good decisions on protecting themselves and their property.

In partnership with other government agencies, researchers, and the private sector, the goals of the Weather-Ready Nation initiative involve:

  • Strengthening joint partnerships to enhance community preparedness;
  • Working with weather enterprise partners and the emergency management community to enhance safety and economic output and effectively manage environmental resources.
  • Improved precision of weather and water forecasts and effective communication of risk to local authorities;
  • Improved weather decision support services with new initiatives such as the development of mobile-ready emergency response specialist teams;
  • Innovative science and technological solutions such as the nationwide implementation of Dual Pol radar technology, Integrated Water Resources Science and Services, and the Joint Polar Satellite System;

Learn more. Visit NOAA’s National Weather Service the YouTube Video: Building A Weather Ready Nation.

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