Storm-Based Warnings Training
NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS) implemented Storm-Based Warnings (SBWs) on October 1, 2007. SBWs (also known as threat-based or polygon warnings) were designed to depict the specific meteorological or hydrometeorological threat areas for severe weather warnings. This includes all tornado, severe, flash flooding, and marine warnings. By focusing on the true threat area(s) and not being restricted to counties, SBWs improve NOAA’s NWS warning accuracy and quality by reducing areas in counties that are not directly impacted by the severe weather threat. Moreover, SBWs promote improved graphical warning displays, and in partnership with the private sector, support a wider warning distribution through digital dissemination devices such as laptop computers, cell phones, Personal Data Assistants (PDAs), and other digital devices.
The SBW Training Team has designed a SBW Training Course that provides specific guidance on how to issue warnings in the SBW era. The course, which is composed of a series of nine asynchronous (i.e., recorded web modules) lessons using Articulate Presenter and Weather Event Simulator (WES) exercises, is targeted to warning staff at NWS Forecast Offices. This course should have been completed prior to SBW implementation on October 1, 2007. However, NWS warning forecasters who were hired after this date may want to complete the course, or other forecasters may want to retake some of the training as a refresher. The course covers most types of severe storms over land or adjacent coastal waters and focuses on recognizing threat areas, polygon creation strategies using WarnGen (i.e., the NWS warning generation and dissemination application), and communication of threat areas to users.
NOTE: Besides the learning objectives for this training, which are evaluated by taking the Final Course Test in the NWS Learning Center Learning Management System (LMS), there are also several performance objectives for this training that are available in PDF format (120 KB).
Note to NWS Staff:
To receive credit for completing the Storm-Based Warning Training, you must complete the course requirements through the NWS Learning Center! The links below are for reference only.
Course Completion Steps
- Students must complete ALL SBW Course lessons in the LMS.
- Students must pass the Final Course Test in the LMS
- Students must complete ANY 4 out of 7 WES SBW exercises (at least 2 Cases).
- Notify WDTD via when coursework is complete (certificate will be mailed)
Contents of Storm-Based Warning Course
The table below describes the contents of the SBW Course. It is recommended that students complete Lesson 1 first. Then, complete Lesson 2, before working through the WES exercises. There is another important element of the SBW training which involves WarnGen OB 8.1 changes (37.4 MB ZIP file). This training, provided by Shannon White of the Forecast Decision Training Branch, includes basic functionality for how to use WarnGen OB 8.1 for creating storm-based warnings.
WDTD would like to thank the following people who provided assistance in developing the SBW training course:
- Shannon White (Forecast Decision Training Branch)
- John Ferree (NWS Severe Weather Program Leader)
- Ken Cook (NWS Wichita)
- Todd Lericos (WFO Caribou)
- Joseph Rogash (WFO El Paso)
- Gary Woodall (WFO Ft. Worth)
- Richard Okulski (WFO Memphis)