2015 was one of the most costly severe weather seasons in decades across northern Michigan. Tens of millions of dollars in damage occurred when severe thunderstorms ripped across parts of the area in August with 100 mph winds and baseball size hail. Clean up from these powerful thunderstorms is still ongoing across portions of northern Michigan as of 2017. Spotters played a pivotal role in helping the National Weather Service warn for these dangerous storms.
Each year, the National Weather Service in Gaylord presents Weather Spotter Classes across northern Michigan. The presentations are free, open to the public, and usually last about 1-1/2 hours. There is no need to pre-register for the class. The training provides details on things such as tornado development, thunderstorm hazards, severe weather safety, things that may fool you, and how to make a complete report to the National Weather Service.
Training sponsored by the Alcona County Amateur Radio Group and Emergency Management Office. Free refreshments will be provided. Contact Stan Darmofal, W8SZ on 989-724-5550 for further information or see: http://alconaradio.org/
After completing the training, attendees will be official National Weather Service Skywarn spotters. Each person that attends is given a National Weather Service spotter card and information on several online spotter networks. In addition, each attendee will have a chance to win one of two free Weather Alert Radios. Additional information on the spotter program may be found at: FAQ’s about Skywarn: www.weather.gov/apx/faq_skywarn