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2017 SKYWARN Classes & Information!


**ATTENTION: All Online Classes Now Conducted Using Join.Me**


Online SKYWARN Spotter Classes

We offer several ONLINE Basic Spotter Courses and a single Advanced Spotter Course each spring and fall. These online classes allow individuals to complete the course(s) in the comfort of their own home or office with the use of, a user-friendly web-based program. By attending any course, which runs about 1.5 - 2 hours, individuals (or a group of individuals) will become SKYWARN Spotters. To see when these classes will be held, scroll down or click hereTo schedule a LOCAL Basic Storm Spotter class in your area, please contact your county Emergency Management Office.


To attend any course:

  1.  Visit  
  2.  Select the green button located on the right of the webpage labeled 'Join Meeting.'
  3.  You will then be prompted to enter a nine-digit code. The code corresponds to the time and date of the      course you wish to attendScroll down to the class schedule or click here to retrieve your code.

NOTE: If your desktop computer or laptop does not have a microphone, you will need to download the desktop application, HERE. Even if you have speakers, you will need to complete this step to hear audio from our presentation.


There are a total of 5 Basic SKYWARN Courses: 2 afternoon sessions and 3 evening sessions + 1 Advanced SKYWARN evening session. Unless you'd like to or are in need of a refresher, you do not need to attend more than one Basic SKYWARN Course, as the material covered is the same; however, we require you to attend at least one Basic SKYWARN Course before taking the Advanced SKYWARN Course.


The only setup requirements will be speakers to listen and, if you want to ask questions, a microphone. If you'd like to attend using your tablet, a app is available for download in the Google and Apple app store. These courses are TWO-WAY, meaning you will be able to interact with the meteorologist leading the training. You will be muted while training is in-progress, and unmuted when applicable (e.g., for questions).


Though not a requirement, as a warm up to the spotter classes, NWS Birmingham would like those who plan on attending the online classes, or even our locally scheduled classes, to view the following FREE online training modules:


                        MetEd Image                                                                     MetEd Image


The "Role of the SKYWARN® Spotter" module is used to provide baseline training for all spotters through multiple scenarios covering the procedures for spotting (including communication and storm report criteria), safety considerations for all hazards, and an overview of the national program and its history. The "SKYWARN® Spotter Convective Basics" module will guide users to a basic understanding of convective storms. Through three different scenarios, you will cover reporting and proper communication of local storm reports to the National Weather Service (NWS), personal safety during these events, and field identification of convective storm hazards. After completing the scenarios, you will be given the opportunity to practice identifying storm features from a spectrum of photos.


Locally Scheduled Basic SKYWARN Spotter Classes

Local, or on-site, basic storm spotter classes are scheduled each spring and fall. To schedule a Fall 2017 local Basic Storm Spotter class in your area, please contact your county Emergency Management Office.


Graduate Storm Spotter Class (GSC)

The Graduate Spotter Class (GSC) will be held twice a year after the completion of the Basic Spotter Classes each spring and fall.  The GSC will be completed over the Internet via Follow along as one of the NWS Meteorologists delves deep into the world of Meteorology. 


Central Alabama SKYWARN Spotter Class Schedule for Fall 2017.



Class / County


Session Code
Enter Code at
Please Read Instructions Above

Tuesday, Sept 19 @ 6:30PM
Forecaster Owen
Basic Online 519-513-540
Wednesday, Sept 27 @ 6:30PM
Forecaster Satterwhite
Basic Online 504-683-535
Wednesday, Oct 04 @ 1PM
Forecaster Holmes
Basic Online 337-446-995
Tuesday, Oct 17 @ 1PM
Forecaster Davis
Basic Online 710-382-215
Thursday, Oct 19 @ 6:30PM
Forecaster Davis
Basic Online 696-520-589
Tuesday, Oct 24 @ 6:30PM
Forecaster Satterwhite
Advanced Online 495-345-822
TBD means To Be Determined
Classes are ~2.0 hours long unless otherwise indicated

All times are Central unless otherwise noted




SKYWARN is the National Weather Service (NWS) program of trained volunteer weather spotters.  Storm spotters come from many walks of life, including fire fighters, law enforcement, and amateur radio operators.  SKYWARN spotters coordinate with local emergency management officials and send reports of weather based phenomena to the NWS.

In addition to serving as a community's first line of defense against dangerous storms, spotters provide important information to warning forecasters who make critical warning decisions.  SKYWARN storm spotters play a critical role of giving the NWS vital ground truth data, which helps the NWS perform its primary mission, to save lives and property.

Registration will be conducted prior to the beginning of each class.  Spotter classes are not usually held during the summer months.  Additional spotter classes may not be shown in the table above when scheduled for specific groups such as law enforcement training classes.


Spotter Information

*In Adobe PDF format, a free download.


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