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Winter Storm Bringing Blizzard Conditions, Heavy Snow and Ice through Tonight

A sprawling winter storm will continue to produce blizzard conditions across the eastern Dakotas, western and southern Minnesota, and northern Iowa. Areas of moderate to heavy snow are expected over much of the Upper Midwest, Great Lakes, and Northeast. To the south of the snow, a wintry mix including some ice accumulations, will impact portions of the northern Mid-Atlantic with slick travel. Read More >

Project Overview

Welcome to the National Weather Service’s (NWS) Hazards Simplification ("Haz Simp") Project! We are glad you are interested and hope you will take the opportunity to learn more about us. The NWS is striving to support a “Weather-Ready Nation” by ensuring you are aware of and prepared for the variety of weather- and water-based hazards we experience across the country every day.  

For decades, the NWS has used the Watch, Warning, and Advisory (WWA) system to alert users of forecasted hazards.  In many ways, the WWA system has been highly effective in protecting life and property. With that said, as we have collected feedback during the course of this project, we have learned that some users find the WWA terms confusing.  Also, users are sometimes confused about how to interpret and distinguish among the large number of individual WWA “products” (e.g., Wind Advisory, Flood Watch, Winter Storm Warning). To address these issues, Haz Simp has embarked on two main paths:

Repair - Adjustments to the Current System

We’ve defined “Repair” as relatively minor changes within the confines of our current system. This is basically the low hanging fruit and answers a continued call by our public, partners, and forecasters to:

  1. Consolidate: Reduce the number of WWA products

  2. Reformat: Simplify the WWA product text

For more information on Haz Simp “Repair” efforts and current progress, please visit the “Repair Progress” section.

 

Revamp - Exploring an Entirely New System

We’ve defined “Revamp” as the exploration of a significant change to the current system.  We would expect this change to require major adjustments to NWS policy, messaging paradigm, and/or software.  As part of this, the Haz Simp team has conducted a variety of social science studies to investigate the understanding of current WWA terms, the performance of entirely new terms, and impacts of a major change to our system.


For more information on Haz Simp “Revamp” efforts and current progress, please visit the “Revamp Progress” section