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Those interested in helping local and state forecasters and emergency response officials be ready to deal with potential severe weather events will have an opportunity for training in a few weeks.
The Oktibbeha Starkville Emergency Response Volunteer Services will offer a storm spotter class Nov. 28 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the small courtroom of the Courthouse Annex. The course will be presented by meteorologists with the the National Weather Service in Jackson.
There is no cost to attend, but space is limited and pre-registration is required.
To preregister, call OSERVS at 418-8911 or send e-mail to OSERVSdirector@gmail.com.
â€śThis class will be beneficial to provide training to local disaster volunteers, law enforcement officers, caregivers, and others in the community interested in learning more about severe weather and spotting storms,â€ť said Jim Britt, Oktibbeha County emergency management director. â€śWeâ€™re not training people to chase storms, but to report what they see as severe weather develops.â€ť
According to the National Weather Service, even with all the technology it uses to prepare severe weather warnings, storm spotters still give the most complete picture of whatâ€™s really happening in and around severe storms.
â€śRadar simply cannot tell us everything we need to know; storm spotters are the eyes and ears in the field,â€ť the Weather Service website states.
Students in the storm spotter class will learn the structure of a severe storm, how a storm develops, and how to inform the National Weather Service of a severe storm.
â€śWeâ€™re very pleased to be able to offer this program at no charge to the community,â€ť said Carol Read, board chair of the OSERVS organization.
â€śThis is the basic storm spotter class; we hope to work with EMA and the National Weather Serivce to offer an advanced course in the spring.â€ť