By Master Sgt. Paula Macomber, 152nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs
/ Published May 28, 2014
152nd Maintenance Group Commander, Col. Barbara Morrow, and 152nd Airlift Wing Emergency Manager, Tech. Sgt. Tim Hill, accepted, on behalf of the 152nd Airlift Wing, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s “StormReady” certificate from Mr. Chris Smallcomb (left) and Mr. Jon Mittelstadt (right). (USAF Photo by Master Sgt. Paula Macomber, 152nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs. RELEASED.)
The Nevada Air National Guard base here in Reno is now certified by the National Weather Service as "StormReady." This certifies that the base has the ability to identify and warn its members of possible severe weather conditions in the area. The base is the first Nevada base in the Department of Defense to receive this designation.
The base's Office of Emergency Management started the process with the initial application filing in March of 2013. After that, a site visit by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and regional and state emergency managers took place to ensure the appropriate resources were in place.
The base must be: able to receive and disseminate weather information with 24-hour monitoring capabilities, have NOAA weather radios, and have lightning detection systems in place. The final step is training of members to identify potential weather conditions which occur in the area. The training was completed on May 7th, 2014. Members of the: Base Fire Department, Emergency Management, Security Forces, Maintenance Operation Control Center and Command Post all attended the training.
The certification is no cost to the base and ensures the Nevada Air National Guard is prepared to respond to the needs of the installation and provide aid to the local community, if a severe weather event were to occur.
Lt. Col. Glen Martel, 152nd Mission Support Group Director, said, "Receiving the StormReady certification means that the High Rollers are leaning forward to provide battle ready airmen for our growing domestic operations mission which will allow us to provide the needed assistance to civilian authorities during natural disasters."
According to the National Weather Service website (www.stormready.noaa.gov), "Each year, Americans cope with an average of 100,000 thunderstorms, 10,000 of which are severe; 5,000 floods; 1,000 tornadoes; and an average of two land-falling deadly hurricanes. All of this in addition to winter storms, intense summer heat, high winds, wild fires and other deadly weather impacts.
"StormReady, a program started in 1999 in Tulsa, Oklahoma helps arm America's communities with the communication and safety skills needed to save lives and property--before and during the event. StormReady helps community leaders and emergency managers strengthen local safety programs.
"StormReady communities are better prepared to save lives from the onslaught of severe weather through advanced planning, education and awareness. No community is "storm proof," but StormReady can help communities save lives." The Nevada Air National Guard is not only Battle Ready but with the 24-hour warning point, an emergency operation center, and various ways to receive severe weather warnings and disseminate those warnings to the base populace, along with the ability to monitor weather conditions, and the formal emergency operation plan ensures it is now StormReady too.