NOUS41 KWBC 301551

PNSWSH

 

Public Information Notice, Comment Request

National Weather Service Headquarters Washington DC

1052 AM EST Mon Dec 3 2012

 

To:      Subscribers:

         -Family of Services

         -NOAA Weather Wire Service

         -Emergency Managers Weather Information Network

         -NOAAPORT

         Other NWS Partners and NWS Employees

 

FROM:    Eli Jacks

         Chief, Fire and Public Weather Services Branch

 

SUBJECT: Soliciting Comments Until March 15, 2013, on an

         Experimental Scaled Predictive Ice Storm Aftermath

         Index at Select NWS Weather Forecast Offices

 

NWS is accepting comments from December 4, 2012, through March

15, 2013, on an experimental Scaled Predictive Ice Storm

Aftermath (SPIA) Index.

 

http://www.nws.noaa.gov/survey/nws-survey.php?code=SPISA

 

Select NWS Weather Forecast Offices (WFOs) (Table 1) will produce

Web graphics depicting the potential impact of freezing rain and

wind on exposed electrical systems to enhance their decision

support services.

 

Current NWS Ice Storm Warnings are issued based on forecast ice

accumulation only, typically one quarter of an inch or greater. 

The combined effect of ice and wind, which more realistically

describes damage potential, is not formally set as warning

criteria.

 

By using the SPIA scaled index, NWS should be able to provide a

better understanding of ice storm impact potential to local,

state, and federal response entities.  The potential impacts are

scaled from 0 to 5 and suggest potential electrical outage

coverage and duration.

 

Until now, the NWS has not attempted to routinely quantify the

impact of ice storms.  The use of this scaled index will allow

the NWS to evaluate the potential of providing these specifics. 

For example, a level 5 ice storm would be defined as one causing

catastrophic damage to entire exposed utility systems, including

both distribution and transmission networks.  Outages could last

several weeks in some locations.

 

Graphics showing forecast index values will be available as part

of the routine forecast provided online for the following WFOs:

 

Table 1:  Participating WFOs and url:

--------  ---------------------------

WFO Tulsa (TSA)

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/tsa/?n=badice

 

WFO Springfield (SGF)

http://www.crh.noaa.gov/sgf/?n=ice_impact_index

 

WFO Pleasant Hill (EAX)

http://www.crh.noaa.gov/eax/?n=ice_impact_index

 

WFO St. Louis (LSX)

http://www.crh.noaa.gov/lsx/?n=ice_impact_index

 

WFO Paducah (PAH)

http://www.crh.noaa.gov/pah/?n=ice_impact_index

 

More information regarding the SPIA index is online in a Product

Description Document:

 

http://products.weather.gov/PDD/SPIA_pdd.pdf

 

During this comment period, a proactive effort will be made to

educate users and partners of the product availability and use. 

At the end of the comment period, the NWS will make a decision on

whether to transition the experimental SPIA Index to operational

status. The experimental SPIA Index may also be considered for

use at other WFOs and NWS Regions.

 

For more information please contact:

 

Steven Piltz

Meteorologist-in-Charge

National Weather Service

Tulsa, OK 74128

918-832-4115

steven.piltz@noaa.gov

 

National Public Information Statements are online at:

 

http://www.weather.gov/os/notif.htm

 

$$