From a Membership Coordinators point of view, I am seeing a group of Weather interested operators forming in the ranks. Factual, BCRO has had past Weather related participation before my appearance on the scene. Maybe it’s time to get serious and look at our potential. Jonathan George, Greg Young, Philip Morgan, and now David Snyder, all of which came to radio with Weather interests. We could be on the verge of building a ’ Splinter Group ’ to pursue something deeper, like real ’ Storm Chasers ’ and ’ Storm Spotters '… We may have a core forming of significance that can begin within the Club. Let’s brainstorm it. 73
Well Shane I am a certified storm spotter in 2019 from NWS and Skywarn
It has been a primary goal of mine to see a rebirth of an active spotter network in NWA. I know there are a large number of spotters in the area, and I know that both Washington and Benton counties generally host active weather nets, but I do not see that any of these are working in conjunction with one another. Most of the spotters that I have talked to in the past have moved away from radio and are phoning or messaging in their reports directly to the NWS.
I am very open to any discussions that would help BCRO grow our current activities relating to weather safety for NWA. I will mention that one difficulty our area faces is the timing of most storms that impact us.
Phillip comments like yours lead to me pressuring you into a Weather Leadership type situation, beware you are in the cross hairs… I mean that with all kindness plus a hint…
How do you “certify”? I’ve been to the trainings but never got a certificate for it lol.
You just go print one out right? It seemed way less official than I expected.
It is on the Tulsa NWS site just have to dig a bit but I also posted the link here with the spotter card
Somehow we gotta dig in and find the training, develop the connectivity with the big Weather Safety Organizations. Attach ourselves with handshakes and then credentials. The sky is the limit, pun intended. If we put a plan in ink, we can hack away at it. For now it’s in the Crock Pot, stewing and that’s just dandy. Let us each do some research and get this bird in hot peanut oil. Posting all developments and staying in touch to not lose momentum…
I went to the NWS spotter training back in Feb. this year. I’m interested in participating with a new storm spotter network when it gets going.
Hey there! Brigan Here, KI5JRA, And I run a 24/7 WXJ52 weather stream, and I use EAS equipment to keep up with the Weather/Alerts, and I use IEMbot to keep up with the chats too. Trying to get my Skywarn/Spotter License, But thanks to Covid, Waiting on that. I would love to help out with any weather things!
Welcome to the forums Brigan!
I think we need to get some input from our existing weather net gurus from NWA EmComm. I’m not interested in reinventing the wheel, just making sure the wheel has the best tire possible.
Greg, that’s a good marker buoy, and great analogy. NWA EmComm is already treading water in this pond for certain. I will be visiting with them and will bring this up. That some BCRO folks have sincere weather interests in spotting and chasing to see how they advise. My personal take on a ‘splinter group’ is not for new unit of radio group. I was thinking, folks with the same focus getting together to get the training as a collective, amigos sharing the experience of learning and such. No reinventing, just an inter club assembly for weather interest. It could be the same for DX, CW, or simply any niche. Yes indeed, no new wheels, just the best tire possible…
Imaginary scenario to simplify my thoughts… Joe, finds a storm spotter or storm chaser seminar, oh my it’s in Kansas City. Joe tells the group, and Henry says, " let’s ride together in my Buick". Clarence says, “count me in, and by the way I have a Auto Club card, we can get a motel on the cheap, we can drive home Saturday morning”. They all ask Todd if he wants to go also, awe too bad Todd can’t make it. The Buick seats 4, so Clarence packs up a cooler full of snacks for the road and it fits nicely in the Buick where Todd’s seat is vacant. Joe, Henry, Clarence, and Todd can offer up their Ham radio weather talents anywhere. They went out to learn it as a group of BCRO members. That would be us as I imagine. Not the actual Weather Warning Entity.
Just my two cents but two large issues I’ve seen in WX nets past is that they are too centric on their county of origin and/or too inconsistent on when to activate. The same WX will affect all of NWA, not just Washington/Benton counties. I have seen some WX nets pop up with only some showers coming through, and no warnings from NOAA and I’ve seen NO net when there are confirmed Tornadoes on the ground. The best WX group I think I’ve seen in NWA was the old WA5TCH group on the K5SRS system, but I believe they have gone the way of the Dodo bird for at least 3 years now…
For future planning I would like to see a group that hones in on these two issue to encourage a NWA (being Benton, Carrol, Madison and Washington Counties) response to the Amateur radio weather effort. Perhaps one could configure a text system to alert all regular participants that a weather net is in fact going on the air.
Two of our long term club members (Paul and Mark) has played an important role in the formation of NWA EMCOMM. I feel if you are interested in Weather and EMCOMM in NWA they are the group to be with. They have been doing a great job and should be supported.
It is really important that Emergency Communication isn’t seen as a BCRO, BVRC or ArkanHams activity. We need all hams in NWA to pull together and I believe NWAEMCOMM is the way to do that.
@wa1gon and @K5DVT I wholeheartedly agree with both of your statements. I think what is being discussed here is what we can do as a club to improve existing and extinct operations to improve the safety of our area as a whole.
Paul and Mark do a great job, but without spotters in the field their weather nets equate to rag-chews about what the weather is like in their backyard. Spotters allow for active data to get to those in the path as events enter the county, and as much as I like and respect Mark and Paul that just isn’t the case currently. I want to work with them, and the small group in Washington Co to improve the process as a whole so that we all benefit.
BRCO can play a big role in this effort, and I think that should be embraced.
I may be speaking out of line but I don’t think that Shane disagrees here. And I also don’t disagree. However I will say my past involvement in the NWA EmComm nets has not been well received. Everyone on the net is usually at home not actually out spotting. Additionally I was asked if I lived in Benton County or if I was just passing through, and that they really didn’t want/need mobile spotters.
Final thought here is that if this “splinter group” wants to actually be out spotting, maybe we are the mobile fleet the EmComm guys don’t have (if they want us).
Maybe you and/or Shane could contact me with the issues you have had to see if we can address them with NWAE.
thanks and 73
Jonathan, Oh my Jonathan, Yes, Yes and Yes. You have decoded my scriptures, Thank You so much. A group of BCRO Weather enthusiast learning about Spotting, Chasing, and Protocols together as friends and applying the new skill set where it is needed. Could be NWA Emcomm, could be Sky Warn, Yada Yada Yada. I feel we may have one guy qualified to address training, I talked to Emcomm today about connections with Benton County EOC. Lets get a foot on one rung of the ladder. Assemble interested operators and find out all the things we don’t know. Let us not speculate above our pay grade and knowledge. We need not fire up nets or drive into the hurricane today.
Lets all meet with them Saturday August 29 to support their efforts. Meanwhile we continue the conversation.
Our current operators with weather enthusiasm do not need to swear allegiance to any group. They should assemble as friends first and learn their craft based on individual initiative. NWA EmComm is not solely about the weather. There are a thousand other disaster preparedness monsters under their umbrella.