Ferris State University Recognized as StormReady

Officials from NOAA's National Weather Service will recognize Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Mich. on Wednesday, November 18th, for completing a set of rigorous warning criteria necessary to earn the distinction of being StormReady®.


            StormReady encourages communities to take a proactive approach to improving local hazardous weather operations and public awareness," said Jamie Bielinski, warning coordination meteorologist at the National Weather Service forecast office in Grand Rapids, Mich. “StormReady arms communities with improved communication and safety skills needed to save lives and property – before and during severe weather.”


            Daniel K. Cobb, Jr., meteorologist-in-charge of the Grand Rapids office, will present a recognition letter and special StormReady signs to Ferris State University officials at a ceremony at the University. The StormReady recognition will be in effect for three years, after which they will go through a renewal process.


The nationwide community preparedness program uses a grassroots approach to help communities develop plans to handle local severe weather and flooding threats. The program is voluntary and provides communities with clear-cut advice from a partnership between local National Weather Service forecast offices and state and local emergency managers. StormReady started in 1999 with seven communities in the Tulsa, Okla., area. There are now more than 1,500 StormReady communities across the country.


To be recognized as StormReady, a community must:

·    Establish a 24-hour warning point and emergency operations center;

·    Have more than one way to receive severe weather forecasts and warnings and to alert the public;

·    Create a system that monitors local weather conditions;

·    Promote the importance of public readiness through community seminars;

·    Develop a formal hazardous weather plan, which includes training severe weather spotters and holding emergency exercises.


             “Just like communities, families need to be storm ready by having an action plan for severe weather,” said Bielinski, “Through StormReady, the National Weather Service plans to educate everyone in the United States about what to do when severe weather strikes because it is ultimately each individual’s responsibility to protect him or herself.”


The StormReady program is part of NOAA National Weather Service's working partnership with the International Association of Emergency Managers and the National Emergency Management Association.


On the Web:

NOAA’s StormReady® program: http://www.stormready.noaa.gov


StormReady® is a registered trademark used by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

From the ceremony held on Wednesday, November 18, 2009:

 Ferris State University StormReady Ceremony

From left to right: Jamie Bielinski (WCM, Grand Rapids NWS), Nathan Jeruzal (Meteorologist, Grand Rapids NWS), Daniel Cobb (MIC, Grand Rapids NWS), Tricia Walding-Smith (Assistant Director of Emergency Management, Ferris State), Michael McKay (Safety Coordinator, Ferris State), Megan Bolter (Student and Group Leader for StormReady Project, Ferris State) and Dr. Jennifer Johnson (Associate Professor of Geography, Ferris State)



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