Officials with NOAA’s National Weather Service forecast office in Las Vegas are looking for interested volunteers to help better protect residents of the Lake Havasu area by providing quality storm reports during severe weather.

The LHC Fire Department will be hosting a two-hour Severe Weather Spotter Training class beginning at 6:00 p.m., Wednesday, June 14, at Fire Station #2 located at 2065 Kiowa Boulevard North. The class is free of charge and open to all area residents interested in weather, thunderstorms, or public safety. All course materials are provided.

The training session is complete with videos and digital images to assist volunteers in learning to identify important thunderstorm characteristics, types of severe weather, weather safety, and reporting procedures.

“Organized in a partnership between National Weather Service Offices and local county emergency management agencies, volunteer weather spotters play an integral role in assisting forecasters in the weather warning process,” according to Dan Berc, Warning Coordination Meteorologist at the Las Vegas National Weather Service office.

“The low population density across much of the area makes our volunteer network a vital cog in obtaining reports of severe weather,” Berc said. “Real-time reports from trained volunteer spotters can improve weather warnings for hail, thunderstorm, wind gusts, and flash flooding. These reports can help us accurately locate weather hazards and assist us in providing timely notification of where storm damage is likely to occur. We are fortunate to have dedicated individuals to help us better protect residents of northwest Arizona.”

Over 1,000 trained spotters assist forecasters at the Las Vegas office by being those eyes on the ground across the area. Berc encouraged current spotters to attend the training as a refresher course.

Additional information on storm spotting is available on the local National Weather Service website at http://www.weather.gov/lasvegas or by calling the Las Vegas office at (702) 263-9744. For class information, contact Fire Administration at (928) 855-1141.

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