SKYWARN is a self-contained network of certified weather spotters sponsored and trained by the National Weather Service (NWS). Many spotters are Amateur Radio operators who submit observations via radio. Compiled observations are forwarded to meteorologists at local NWS offices and the data is incorporated into reports and forecasts. SKYWARN volunteers collect on-the-spot weather observations in localized areas that assist NWS meteorologists in producing forecasts that are more accurate and warnings that are more timely.
Online SKYWARN Training Options
You only need to complete one of the Basic courses listed to become a spotter:
- SKYWARN Basic Spotter Training 2019 Videos - Mt. Holly NJ - Recorded local SKYWARN Basic Spotter presentation from the Mt Holly, NJ NWS office. View a series of 3 YouTube videos recorded at the end of 2019 (the Skywarn presentation has changed very little since then).
- SKYWARN Basic Spotter Training 2021 Videos - Central PA - Recorded local SKYWARN Basic Spotter presentation from the Central PA NWS office. View their video from 2021.
- SKYWARN Basic Spotter Training - MetEd - Online course few notes about this option: this doesn't have some of the local-specific information, but it is a great course. Also, you may have to register to take any module on this site, but it is free.
The local NWS offices would occasionally hold these course in-person, however most options are all online for now.
SKYWARN Spotter Registration for Mt. Holly Office - in order to register your information and obtain your Spotter ID. You can always report weather to your local NWS office, but reports from spotters and local emergency management agencies are always considered to be more accurate.
Once you get your Spotter ID, you can also add to your knowledge with the advanced spotter course. If you have ever wondered how to spot a tornado on weather radar using both reflectivity and velocity returns, this is for you.
- SKYWARN Advanced Spotter Training 2020 Videos - Central PA - Recorded local SKYWARN Advanced Spotter presentation from the Central PA NWS office. View their video from 2020.