2015 Severe Weather Spotter Training

Scheduling for the 2015 storm spotter training season is complete.

There are several on-line storm spotter training modules and reference materials available:

Do you have questions about SKYWARN or becoming a spotter? Click here for our SKYWARN FAQ page.  Most sessions are open to the general public with no need to pre-register.  All training is free and usually lasts around 2 hours.

Main NWS La Crosse contact for spotter training is Todd Shea, Warning Coordination Meteorologist.

Last Updated: 2/20/15

Date Time County City Location / Attendance
March 4 6:30 p.m. Fayette Oelwein, IA Northeast Iowa Community College
RAMS Center
1400 Technology Drive
March 5 6:30 p.m. Jackson Black River Falls, WI Ho-Chunk Admin. Bldg
W9814 Airport Road
March 12 7:00 p.m. Clayton Edgewood, IA Fire Station
March 16 6:30 p.m. Adams Adams, WI Adams County Community Center
Room 145b
569 N. Cedar Street
March 18 10:00 a.m. All NWS La Crosse
Service Areas
On-Line Webinar
Register by emailing todd.shea@noaa.gov
March 19 6:30 p.m. Mitchell/Floyd Osage, IA Mitchell County Conservation
Highway 9 - west of Osage
March 23 6:30 p.m. Grant Fennimore, WI Fire Station
March 24 6:30 p.m. Winneshiek Decorah, IA Decorah City Hall
Council Chambers
March 30 6:30 p.m. Grant Platteville, WI Fire Station
March 31 6:30 p.m. Olmsted Rochester, MN Rochester International
Event Center
April 2 6:30 p.m. Dodge Dodge Center, MN Fire Station
130 E. Highway St.
April 8 1:30 p.m. All NWS La Crosse
Service Areas
On-Line Webinar
Register by emailing todd.shea@noaa.gov
April 9 6:30 p.m. Wabasha Lake City, MN American Legion
224 S.Washington St.
April 13 6:30 p.m. Fillmore Spring Valley, MN Kingsland High School Gym
705 North Section Ave
April 14 6:30 p.m. Vernon Viroqua, WI Viroqua Area School
April 15 6:30 p.m. La Crosse La Crosse, WI Marycrest Auditorium
Mayo Clinic Health System
700 West Ave. S
April 20 6:30 p.m. Taylor Medford, WI Fire Station
April 21 6:30 p.m. Chickasaw To be determined To be determined

Training from surrounding NWS offices:

Outline of the 2015 Presentation

First Half

  • Introduction to Storm Spotting
  • Information about NWS La Crosse
  • The Spotting Process
  • Sources of weather information
  • NWS Information / Outlooks (update!) 
  • Spotter deployment 
  • Spotting locations
  • Stages of the thunderstorm (updraft/downdrafts)
  • Thunderstorm Hazards (Flooding, Lightning, Hail)
  • Downbursts
  • Thunderstorm Wind

Second Half

  • Squall Lines / Shelf Clouds (updated!) 
  • Supercells
  • Elements of the Supercell
  • Wall Clouds
  • Tornado definitions and examples
  • Funnel clouds
  • Challenges to spotters 
  • Spotter reporting procedures/guidelines
  • Spotter safety (focus on El Reno, OK tornado)
  • Review / Case study (location dependent)

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