Two national weather branches predict severe weather outbreaks—the National Weather Service (NWS) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Storm Prediction Center (SPC). According to AccuWeather.com, the SPC will typically issue “WATCHES”. Watches are issued when “conditions are favorable” for a severe thunderstorm, flooding or tornadic activity. A watch does not mean that severe weather is looming or imminent, but means that conditions are favorable for those weather events to occur over a large area—typically an area over 25,000 square miles.
On the other hand, “WARNINGS” are issued by the National Weather Service and mean that severe weather, damaging hail, or flooding is imminent and is based on criteria developed by the NWS. It’s not just heavy rain and wind that triggers a Severe Weather Warning— specifically, the criteria include wind speeds over 55 miles per hour and with hail in excess of 1 inch in diameter. Additionally, these warnings can be followed by or include small stream and urban flooding advisories. The geography associated with a warning tends to much smaller much more specific. Also, trained spotters will feed information back to the NWS to corroborate Doppler Radar information.
In a severe weather warning, take immediate precautions to protect yourself, your loved ones and your outdoor pets. If flooding or damage does occur, make sure you’re safe first—then call the experts at American Restoration Water and Fire, LLC to help you rebuild your home or office.