Storm Watch vs Warning Forecast in Akron, Ohio
Storm Watch versus Storm Warning
In our daily routine we check the weather forecast. Sometimes, that forecast will prepare us for storms that maybe developing and we continue to watch the news in case something severe develops. We hear the terms Storm Watch and Strom Warning on TV, but what really is the difference between a storm watch vs a storm warning?
Knowing what weather terms mean can help you prepare your home and family for any type of weather event. The best time to learn them is before any emergency happens.
A WATCH means that the potential exists for the development of severe thunderstorms or tornadoes, depending upon the specific type of watch issued. In the case of a tornado watch, this DOES NOT mean that a tornado has been seen or even indicated on radar...it just means that conditions are favorable for the formation of tornadoes in thunderstorms. Similarly, a severe thunderstorm watch means that conditions are just conducive for the development of severe weather and DOES NOT indicate that severe weather has been reported. While no immediate action on the part of the general public is required for the issuance of a watch, citizens should keep up to date on the current weather situation and be prepared to seek shelter if necessary.
This is a great time to prepare your house if forecasts are calling for a strong storm.
- Tie down or bring in outdoor items that can go airborne.
- Clean out your gutters to prevent water from pooling on your roof.
- For serious storms, consider boarding up your windows.
- If a possible tornado is on its way, make sure your safe room is ready.
A WARNING, on the other hand, requires more immediate action and should be taken seriously. A severe thunderstorm warning indicates that severe weather is imminent in your area or is already occurring (based on either human observation or doppler radar). The term severe refers to hail greater than or equal to 1.00" in diameter and/or wind gusts that meet or exceed 58 mph. Although these storms can also be associated with dangerous cloud to ground lightning or heavy rainfall that is capable of causing flash flooding, neither of these two items serve as criteria for a severe thunderstorm warning being issued.
What do I do if severe weather is coming?
- Have a plan for immediate shelter in your home for your family and pets.
- It is possible to loose electricity during severe storms. Be prepared by charging your cell phone and have a battery operated weather radio.
- Be prepared by having all emergency documents in a water/fire proof safe, first aid kit, bottle water and food,
- Prepare your home by tying down any outside furniture, trampolines, grills, flower pots, etc.
- If a possible tornado, consider boarding up your windows.