Get a NOAA Weather Radio for Home and One for the Studio

Jan 25

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Wednesday, January 25, 2012  RssIcon

Tornado season in the South started early this year. The warning from a NOAA weather radio in the early hours of the morning was a reminder of how important it is for every home and workplace to have a functioning weather radio. A NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) Weather Radio broadcasts National Weather Service (NWS) watches, warnings, forecasts and other hazards 24 hours a day, seven days a week over all 50 states, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, and U.S. Pacific Territories.While 85-95 percent of the nation is covered by weather broadcasts, it is estimated that only 5-10% of Americans actually own a weather radio. It is especially important to have one when a storm strikes in the middle of the night, or when you are working in the studio and may not be listening to a radio or television.

Here are some facts and tips about weather radios:

  • The radio turns on and broadcasts an alarm when there is a serious event in your area such as:
    • Dangerous weather situations

    • AMBER alerts

    • Natural and technological hazards

    • National emergencies

  • Weather radios are available for about $20 to over $100 depending on the brand, model and features.

  • Portable weather radios can be taken with you in the car, or when camping, hiking, playing golf, etc. to warn you of potentially life-threatening situations.

  • Look for a radio that has SAME (Specific Area Message Encoding). This feature allows you to program your radio for the specific county or counties in which you use the radio. This eliminates alarms that do not directly affect your area.

  • Some radios allow the user to select alerts to receive, but alerts for extremely dangerous situations such as tornadoes, cannot be turned off.

  • Weather radios can be purchased with features for the deaf and visually impaired, and can be hooked up to a variety of attention-getting devices such as strobe lights and bed shakers.

  • Like a copy of the Studio Protector®: The Artist’s Guide to Emergencies, a weather radio is a great gift for someone you care about.

  • A NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio can be purchased at electronics retailers, big box stores, and a variety of online vendors.

  • Weather alert cell phone apps and services, both free and fee-based, are available from a number of services. One of these can augment, but not replace a weather radio. Don’t depend on your cell phone to wake you from a deep sleep!

More information on NOAA All Hazards Weather Radios including SAME codes to program your receiver are available from NOAA.

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