Winter and Non-Precipitation Watches/Warnings/Advisory Format to Change

On December 8, 2009, the National Weather Service in Omaha will change the format of winter and non-precipitation (WSW/NPW) watch/warning/advisory products to a bullet format.

During winter storm and non-precipitation events affecting multiple forecast zones, WSW and NPW statements become very long and time consuming for forecasters to produce. The length of the product can make it difficult for people to quickly scan multiple forecast zones for vital storm information. 

Last winter, the National Weather Service in Reno, Nevada modified the WSW and NPW product to a bullet formatted product.  The format is similar to tornado, severe thunderstorm and flash flood warnings. This format is easier for people to read and quickly gather vital watch, warning and advisory information.

During the 2009/2010 winter season, the use of the bullet formatted WSW/NPW will be expanded to all of Western and Central Region offices plus selected offices in other regions. This includes all National Weather Service offices serving Nebraska and Iowa.

For a complete description of the change and examples, please click here.  

Questions and comments should be directed to Brian Smith, Warning Coordination Meteorologist, at the National Weather Service in Omaha.  Brian can be reached at 402-359-5166 extension 726, or e-mail at


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