NWS warns for more than just weather events which tend to be more on the mild side in the LA Basin, occasional tornado warnings and severe thunderstorm warnings and flash flood warnings and Santa Ana Wind warnings and even less frequent tsunami warnings notwithstanding.
That being said one needs to stay alert for the unexpected... NWS does fire warnings too like this one for the Amarillo, TX, area right this moment where a fire is bearing down on a community and an immediate emergency evac is being ordered via NOAA Weather Radio and internet alerts:
TEXAS EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY AMARILLO TEXAS
RELAYED BY NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AMARILLO TX
740 PM CDT SUN MAY 29 2011
THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE IS TRANSMITTED AT THE REQUEST OF THE TEXAS
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY AMARILLO TEXAS.
RESIDENTS IN THE TASCOCITA AREA...WOODLANDS...ALL OF WESTCLIFF...AND
AREAS NORTH OF TASCOSA ROAD IN POTTER COUNTY ARE BEING ASKED TO
EVACUATE IMMEDIATELY. THE EVACUATION RECEIVING POINT IS NOW AT GRACE
CHURCH AT PLAINS AND WESTERN.
On Sun, May 29, 2011 at 5:36 PM, newnethboy <email@example.com> wrote:
Agreed that having a whole lot of tech gadgets is not necessary (fun,
though). However, a friend in KY (retired cop) insists that everybody should
have a weather alert radio.
Frankly, in SoCal, away from the forests, at 1000 ft above sea level but on
only slight slope, my weather radio has yet to warn me of anything that
would affect me. (In other words, I've yet to see anything in my area that I
needed to be warned about.)
Still, I'm comfortable having the radio, which gives a much more timely
warning that CD, local radio/TV, or any other source I've tried.
I absolutely recommend such a radio to anybody, especially to anyone who
might ever need to be warned of anything (which, as it turns out, is nearly
And then there's the Internet: I have the local NWS radar stations
bookmarked, along with the regional satellite and a lightning detector site;
I open all these whenever there's a storm system approaching. I can tell
(mostly) when the rain cells are going to hit, and on at least two occasions
I got shopping squeezed in between cells. Webpages like these are available
everywhere; I wouldn't trust them for tornado warnings (map not clear enough
and tornados too sudden), but they provide good information.
There are also NWS pages for hurricane mapping: Days of warning; if you're
vulnerable to these, you can get your boards and supplies ready before the
rush (although these maps are still subject to the uncertainty of hurricane
----- Original Message -----
From: "Lin Kerns" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Sunday, May 29, 2011 3:50 PM
Subject: Re: [californiadisasters] If a Tornado Were Headed Toward You, What
Would You Do?
Having been visited by a few twisters in my lifetime, I'd like to politely
point out something that's missing from this article: the responsibility of
every adult to monitor weather conditions. I realize in CA that forecasting
can't be as precise as those forecasts farther east, but while I lived out
in CA, I monitored the weather constantly and although I spent a great deal
of time in the Colorado Desert, I was never surprised by any unusual weather
I would not go shopping if severe weather was in the forecast or if I saw an
approaching weather system with a cold/warm mix of air. Every smartphone has
the capability of having an app for radar and local forecasts for anywhere
in the US. I would go to the movies here in TN, but not in CA, due to the
differences in building material (concrete blocks reinforced with rebar).
I have been caught out in a freak blizzard, but I outran it. I have left
school, 81 miles away, and outran a funnel cloud only to catch up to another
one on the destination end and having to slow down. Thanks to my portable
scanner and the radar app on my phone, I managed to dodge both. I've had
some near misses, but that was in the days before all the techie gadgets.
I'm not saying everyone needs to go all out and buy a lot of electronic
gizmos, but I am saying that one should be responsible for their own lives.
Guess I'm asking too much, though.
*PS Any responses, please direct them to the cross posted post in the CAD
Discussion Group, as those posted here will be removed. Thanks for your
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