The NWS Warning and Forecast Office (WFO) Des Moines serves the central half of Iowa, providing warnings, watches, and forecasts for the protection of life and property per our Mission Statement.
NWS Des Moines area of responsibility (County Warning Area)
Our office collects weather observations and issues public forecasts, watches, warnings, advisories, and other weather-related products for 51 counties in central Iowa. We also issue terminal aerodrome forecasts for five local airports, fire weather forecasts for government and commercial interests, and have a full-service hydrology program. We have 24 staff members, including ten full-time forecasters and four data acquisition personnel. Our equipment includes a WSR-88D Doppler radar, 14 NOAA Weather Radio transmitters, and dozens of river gauges and automated surface observation sites. We also maintain an active public outreach program, including cooperative weather observers, trained storm spotters, and CoCoRAHS observers, as well as interacting with the general public at local events. Our office maintains close involvement with local scientific organizations (such as the National Weather Association and various groups affiliated with Iowa State University), media outlets, and law enforcement and emergency management personnel (including the state emergency operations center).