National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Some users of NWS radar displays have begun receiving messages about the use of Adobe Flash in the display. Flash is scheduled to be discontinued toward the end of this year (2020), so web browsers have begun to alert users of this upcoming event.

The NWS's website has been the face of NWS radar data since 2003. The site routinely receives around 1.75 million hits on an average day and hundreds of millions of hits per day during active weather. The face of technology has changed dramatically throughout the last decade. By 2018 81% of Americans 13 years and older owned a smartphone. These devices have changed how and where we browse the internet. By 2018 mobile devices generated more than half of all web site traffic worldwide. 

Example of new radar displayThe radar web site is not mobile-friendly in its current form and some of the displays use Flash. So, in response to these dramatic changes, this spring the NWS will replace the existing site and features with the following:

  • Radar data and warnings presented on a dynamic map that allows zooming and scrolling
  • Radar data will include MRMS (Multi-Radar, Multi-Sensor) data in Quality Controlled (QCed) and non-QCed form, including rain/snow delineation
  • Increase in GIS services
  • Saving animations for use elsewhere (e.g. social media)

An example of the planned display is shown at right (subject to change).

In the meantime, we do have a non Flash-based version of the radar displays. This can be accessed from the regular radar page by clicking on the "Go to: Standard Version" link near the top left part of the screen. Or, you can use the following link:

(Article originally published by NWS Central Illinois & NWS Louisville)