LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – March 1-6, 2021 has been declared Severe Weather Awareness Week by the National Weather Service (NWS) and Arkansas Department of Emergency Management (ADEM). The Arkansas Storm Team will be breaking down a topic each day. Today’s topic of discussion is storm reports.
Not only does the National Weather Service issue severe weather warnings, but it also collects storm reports during and after a weather event.
These reports from the public help to verify warnings and determine whether the warning was justified.
Real-time reports help meteorologists and other radar operators determine what’s actually occuring within a storm and what has been produced from the storm. These reports are used to understand severe storms and improve the warning process.
Reports come in from a wide range of sources. That often includes trained storm spotters, emergency management personnel, the media and law enforcement. The general public is also encouraged to send in storm reports. Nowadays, many of the storm reports come in from social media picture sharing. They can also be phoned to the local National Weather Service office.
Information to include in a report: time of the event, location, what happened (heavy rain, flash flooding, hail, wind speed, tornado, damage).
All reports are entered to a database and become archived. They are accessible online by the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI).
How to send in storm reports:
1. People can call 1.800.482.8471 if they are a trained storm spotter, or 501.834.0308 if they are a member of the general public. Either way our phones are answered 24/7/365.
2. At the bottom of the National Weather Service, Little Rock’s webpage: www.weather.gov/LZK there’s a button at the bottom that says “Submit Storm Report”. Clicking that button will open up a form to submit a report. That report gets communicated directly in front of a warning forecaster.
3. Reports can be sent directly on Facebook or Twitter by visiting or searching for @NWSLittleRock, or by mentioning @NWSLittleRock and/or #ARwx on Twitter. A @NWSLittleRock mention sets off an audible alert to our forecasters.
4. Anyone can download the mPing app and submit a storm report anonymously from their location. The app is free, created by the University of Oklahoma, the National Severe Storms Laboratory, NASA, and NOAA, and is called mPing.