National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Severe Storms Across Portions of the Central U.S.; Wet and Windy in the Northwest

A few severe thunderstorms with damaging winds and large hail are expected this today across Kentucky, northeast Minnesota, and from southeast Colorado into the Oklahoma Panhandle. These storms may produce heavy rain and flooding in Kentucky. A strong cold front will sweep through the Northwest U.S. with rain, mountain snow and high winds. Heat and record high temperatures persist in the South. Read More >

FAQs:

Why are we doing this?
This change will enable the NWS to provide more efficient weather services to the State of Maryland by having a single NWS office provide forecast and warning services for all of western Maryland and the entire Interstate 95 corridor within Maryland.

Specifically for Garrett County, this transfer will allow NWS weather services for all of western MD to be provided by one National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office.  All existing public weather spotters for the NWS will be transferred. Also, a free/online SKYWARN weather spotter class will be held for Garrett County on Tue Nov 17th at 6pm for both existing spotters, and to train new ones in the county. Weather spotters are a valuable resource to help us observe weather throughout the county. Link to register is on: https://www.weather.gov/baltimore/skywarn

Specifically for Cecil County, this transfer will unify NWS weather services for the entire I-95 corridor through Maryland, as well as both the east & west banks of the Susquehanna River. All existing public weather spotters for the NWS will be transferred to the NWS Baltimore/Washington Weather Forecast Office. Also, a free/online SKYWARN weather spotter class will be held for Cecil County on Wed Nov 18th at 6pm for both existing spotters, and to train new ones in the county. Weather spotters are a valuable resource to help us observe weather throughout the county. Link to register is on: https://www.weather.gov/baltimore/skywarn

How will this impact me?  
This change should be largely transparent to you. National Weather Service forecasts and warnings will not change, only the NWS office that provides that information will change. In this age of data sharing, NWS offices each have access to the same radar, observations, satellite, and weather modeling and monitoring information to provide the best weather forecast and warning services possible for all counties.

How will this impact NOAA Weather Radio broadcasts?
There will be no change to the broadcast areas of any NOAA Weather Radio transmitter for this transfer. Only the NWS office that issues the forecasts & warnings for these two counties will change. No changes are needed for the county programming of your alerts on NOAA Weather Radio. Your county code remains the same.

How will this impact the forecasts I get from broadcasters that serve my area?
Like the general population, your broadcasters will continue to get the same NWS information to assist in their forecast for your area. Only the NWS office that issues the NWS forecasts and warnings for Garrett and Cecil Counties will change. The service provided remains the same.

How can I access the latest NWS forecasts and warnings for my area?
For any location in our country, you can go to weather.gov and enter your location to get the latest forecasts and warnings for that location from the NWS Weather Forecast Office that serves it.  Our area's local page specific to our forecast and warning area can be accessed at weather.gov/baltimore

Winter is coming. Where can I get the latest NWS projections on snow and ice?
Add /winter to our main webpage address [weather.gov/baltimore/winter], or click on the snowflake icon below the map on our webpage to get our latest snow and ice forecasts. We have the "range of possibilities" for snow accumulations over the next 3 days that uses the wealth of domestic & international weather modelling available, and our own local forecaster expertise. We also have a Winter Storm Threat level for each day from 3 to 7 days in the future.

Another 88D Doppler Radar is closer to our part of Garrett/Cecil County than the one at NWS Baltimore/Washington, will that impact storm forecasting and warning?
NWS Baltimore/Washington has access to all of our surrounding 88D radars - including KPBZ in Pittsburgh PA, KRLX in Charleston WV, KDOX in Dover DE, and KDIX in Mt. Holly, NJ. We utilize all of them for the best forecast and warning service possible for all of our forecast area.

Weather in Garrett County is quite different from the rest of Maryland, especially in winter, will our level of service change?
It will remain the same high-quality forecast and warning service you are accustomed to. NWS Baltimore/Washington already forecasts similar locations across the border in the mountains of West Virginia, including the highest point in either state (Spruce Knob, WV at 4,863'). Also, we have access to the same data and partnerships used by NWS Pittsburgh. Existing and new weather spotters will further help us to observe the weather there to inform our forecasts and warnings.