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The National Weather Service (NWS) works closely with emergency managers and officials across New Mexico to organize and schedule spotter training classes each year.  The sessions are free and the public is invited.  SKYWARN training lasts around 2 hours and includes the basics of thunderstorm development, severe thunderstorm structure, storm spotting techniques and procedures, as well as hazardous weather safety and preparedness information.  NWS operations and procedures to include amateur radio nets are also discussed.  Each class is tailored to your local area.

For a preview of some of the material, check out our SKYWARN page.  If you are interested in becoming a SKYWARN spotter, check the list below for a training session.  If you need more information, contact one of the meteorologists listed farther below, and we will be happy to help you.  We look forward to seeing you at a SKYWARN spotter training session soon!



List of NWS Albuquerque Spotter Training Sessions for 2022
Day Date Time Registration Link
Thu March 10th 6pm-8pm Date has passed
Wed March 30th 2pm-4pm Date has passed
Wed April 20th 2pm-4pm Date has passed

On-line Training Resources:

Two training modules are available from COMET® (Cooperative Program for Operational Meteorology, Education and Training) as part of the on-line SKYWARN Spotter Training Course: SKYWARN Spotter Convective Basics (1 hour) and Role of the SKYWARN Spotter (1 hour). Both modules include photographs, video, audio narration, and a companion print version. The intended audience is the general public interested in becoming storm spotters, and after this training, they can register to become a SKYWARN spotter with NWS Albuquerque or their local NWS office.

  • These modules are national in scope and are not specifically tailored to our local area. However, these modules will be a great resource and means to recruit spotters from New Mexico that are otherwise not able to attend in-person training sessions.
  • NWS Albuquerque will continue to schedule and support annual training. These modules will supplement that effort.
  • Those interested in this training will need to set up an account on the MetEd site.

    SKYWARN® Spotter Convective Basics: This 1-hour module provides baseline training for spotters who may encounter severe thunderstorms. Procedures for making spotter reports are modeled with best practices. The module also discusses how to maintain your personal safety while spotting. In a series of three scenarios, image galleries will help you understand the spectrum of each storm feature you can identify in the field. After completion of the scenarios or as a refresher, you can test your identification skills in the photo quiz

    SKYWARN® Spotter: This 1-hour module provides baseline training for all spotters. An overview of the national program and its history is presented with an example of an event that greatly influenced the growth of the SKYWARN program. Through multiple scenarios, procedures for making spotter reports, including communication and storm report criteria, are modeled with best practices for maintaining personal safety outlined. 
  • These modules are part of the SKYWARN Spotter Training Course available on MetEd.
  • Supplemental brochures, posters and safety materials can also be found here

For additional information on SKYWARN training or local ARES coordinators that could assist you, please contact:


Northern and Central New Mexico (NWS Albuquerque NM)

Contact:  Scott Overpeck, Warning Coordination Meteorologist at (505) 244-9150 Ext 223.

Southwest and South Central New Mexico (NWS El Paso TX)

Contact:  Jason Laney, Warning Coordination Meteorologist, at (575) 589-4088 Ext 223.

Southeast New Mexico (NWS Midland TX)

Contact:  Amber Hluchan, Warning Coordination Meteorologist, at (432) 563-5006 Ext 223.




To find out what county warning area you live in, click on this link for a more detailed map of New Mexico's county warning areas.