Many of us use the turn of a calendar year to change something about ourselves, make a list of desirable goals and achievements, try something new, or just use it as a clean slate. We hope for the best regarding your 2018 resolutions while wishing you the utmost luck in sticking with them. Consider one more for 2018; weather-related resolutions!
Here are our top five weather resolutions for the new year, starting with…
#1 Create a disaster / emergency kit
Throughout here at WeatherNation we warn of incoming tornadoes, storm surge flooding from hurricanes, and evacuations due to wildfires. Sometimes the people in harm’s way have a few days to get ready, gather belongings, and leave. However other times it’s only a matter of a few minutes. Those precious minutes can be best spent if there is already a disaster or emergency kit ready. Grab and go!
Head on over to www.ready.gov for a full list of items that you may need in your emergency kit. It’s good to have a kit in any event, in case of any event like a fire, flood, tornado, power outage, etc.
#2 Be weather ready
This next resolution may sound a lot like the one we just discussed, having a storm kit ready, but it goes a step beyond. The National Weather Service is pushing a campaign called Weather Ready Nation where meteorologists work with officials and volunteers to be prepared for the next weather event. A good Twitter handle to follow is the NOAA/WRN one below!
It's December 1 which means the launch of the Weather-Ready Nation Winter Safety Campaign. https://t.co/N2Kt5WJSXY
Know your risk. Take Action. Be an Example. #wintersafety #WeatherReady pic.twitter.com/NzZDLd9Lyr
— NOAA WRN Ambassadors (@WRNAmbassadors) December 1, 2017
Being ‘weather ready’ can be as easy as downloading a couple of weather apps, enabling notifications for when lightning is near you, checking the weather forecast daily for any hazards, or monitoring the weather forecast before travel to be aware of what you’ll experience. If you know what kind of weather is coming in, it makes it much easier to plan for and live with atmosphere that surrounds us. You can learn much more about this topic at weather.gov/wrn/ambassadors
#3 Get more involved in the weather community
As meteorologists, We. Love. Data. The more, the merrier. Why are weather models so good (but not perfect) at predicting weather? Data. How do we know how much snow you received? Data. There’s a network called CoCoRaHS where volunteers work together to submit precipitation data across nations. You may have heard of SkyWarn, where you could be a trained storm spotter and help us alert the public about lightning, thunderstorms, and tornadoes! There’s also mPING where you can submit weather easily from your location and the classic cooperative program.
#4 Be kind to your local meteorologist
Meteorologists work around the clock, beyond their shifts, and through the holidays to monitor the weather, make calculated predictions, alert the public of hazardous weather, and be an answer to specific questions. Sure, we’re wrong at times. We know we don’t always get it right, but understand that the job requires predicting the future. Ever fill out one of those basketball brackets during springtime, only to find out how difficult it is to predict the future? Sure we have many advances, new satellites, awesome numerical modeling at our fingertips, but sometimes things pan out differently than we expect. And when that happens next time, go easy on us!
#5 Have a weather discussion, not a weather argument
Debating is great. Having freedom of speech in our country is even better. Our final 2018 weather resolution to you is to be thoughtful and considerate when discussing weather. There have been many times where a big snow storm, a bitterly-cold outbreak, a daily record high, or damaging flooding sparks an argument about the climate. Long story short, one storm will not prove or disprove facts about the climate. We only ask that if one feels so strongly about weather, climate, and our atmosphere, that he or she researches that subject and has valid points for the next time the discussion pops up.
Happy New Year!
For WeatherNation, Meteorologist Steve Glazier