NWS Industrial Meteorology

Policy and Guidelines Governing National Weather Service and Private Sector Roles (A-06)

Note: This policy is no longer in effect. For current policy, see: NOAA Policy on Partnerships in the Provision of Environmental Information


5. Guidelines for Providing Weather Briefings and other Related Weather Services in Suppor of a Special Event:

5. Guidelines for Providing Weather Briefings and other Related Weather Services in Support of a Special Event. NWS special event participation may require on-site support. However, more common is weather support from the NWS facility. This latter support scenario will often take the form of weather briefings provided to organizers of special events within the county warning area.

NWS occasionally provides support to special events that are nonprofit and sometimes for profit. These events include those that attract very large crowds and those situations where an individual or a small group of people undertake a special project, i.e., a small balloon flight, small boat trip, etc.

The following are some of the categories of special events where NWS participation is permitted or should be considered:

a. International sporting events held in the United States, e.g., the Olympics. This support could also be done in partnership with weather services of other World Meteorological organization (WMO) member nations.

b. International aviation events held in the United States.

c. International aviation events held in other nations where WMO and the International Civil Aviation Organization have requested NWS support.

d. International marine events, e.g., America's Cup, Marblehead-to-Halifax race, etc.
NWS shall be the sole provider of support to domestic events held in international waters (i.e., outside the U.S. 200-mile limit) based on its responsibility to provide services for assigned international waters under WMO agreements and Safety of Life at Sea conventions.

e. International events where a NOAA/NWS presence is requested, and private sector support is not appropriate.

f. Domestic aviation and marine events with substantial pilot, mariner, and/or public attendance.

g. Events where large crowds can be affected by severe weather and where continuous event-monitoring is required (e.g., golf tournaments).

Three additional criteria should also be considered prior to NWS participation:

a. Request has been made by another government agency or the event sponsor when NWS support is required for the issuance of special weather products or warnings.

b. Special event organizer should pay for or share support costs of NWS personnel and equipment being used at the event as appropriate. NWS cannot solicit travel expenses for its employee's travel to such events, but may accept unsolicited payments for these expenses in appropriate instances

c. NWS resources must be available.


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