National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Skywarn is a National Weather Service (NWS) program of trained volunteer severe weather spotters. Skywarn volunteers support their local community by providing the NWS with timely and accurate severe weather reports. These reports, when integrated with modern NWS technology, are used to inform communities of the proper actions to take as severe weather threatens. The key focus of the Skywarn program is to save lives and property through the use of the observations and reports of trained volunteers.

Skywarn volunteers donate thousands of hours and the use of their own personal radio equipment and vehicles to give their communities advanced warning of life threatening weather. Since the NWS instituted the Skywarn Program, there has been a significant decrease in the death rate due to tornadoes and other severe weather.

Spotter Items:



Are you interested in hosting a SKYWARN Spotter Training Session?  

The NWS Raleigh frequently works with groups such as amateur radio clubs, emergency services organizations, schools, universities, and civic groups and clubs to host SKYWARN Spotter Training. If your group or club would like to host a training session in central North Carolina, please complete this survey.  We require a miminum of 20 people to attend before we'll consider hosting a training session with any group.  We are now scheduling classes through the fall of 2018


NWS Raleigh spotter ID numbers

NWS Raleigh has discontinued the issuance of, and use of spotter ID numbers.   When making storm reports to the NWS Raleigh, please do not include a spotter ID number; instead, simply provide your name, location, details pertaining to the severe weather or damage, and contact information.  Spotters who wish to obtain some sort of identification number are encouraged to consider becoming a CoCoRaHS observer to supplement their SKYWARN service.

Schedule of upcoming in-person SKYWARN training sessions:


Date and Time City/County Location Training Sponsor and Event Notes.  Unless otherwise noted, all events are open to the public and registration is not needed (simply show up).

Tuesday April 10 and Tuesday April 17, 2018

9:15 PM

Over the air for amateur radio operators, otherwise, interested people can listen online . SKYWARN Training will be offered on the Central Carolina SKYWARN Net This special listen-over-the-air SKYWARN training event will take place over the course of two evenings via two 40 minute sessions.  For more information about this SKYWARN training opportunity, please visit

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

6 PM to 7:30 PM

Winston-Salem, NC Forsyth County NC Cooperative Extension
1450 Fairchild Road
Winston-Salem, NC 27105


Sponsored by Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Emergency Management.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

7:30 PM to 9 PM

Winston-Salem, NC Forsyth County NC Cooperative Extension
1450 Fairchild Road
Winston-Salem, NC 27105


Basic SKYWARN Training is a prerequisite.

Sponsored by Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Emergency Management.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

6:30 PM

Apex, NC Wake County Hally Cultural Art Center 237 North Salem St, Apex NC 27502

Basic SKYWARN Training

Sponsored by Apex CERT.


Free, web-based SKYWARN training:

  • COMET SKYWARN Spotter Training. This free web-based SKYWARN training class is available to the public, and is offered by the COMET MetED program. The NWS Raleigh is honoring this training and will include individuals who take this online training as part of its database of SKYWARN spotters for central North Carolina.


Other Training Items:


Local SkywarnTM Groups:


Remember...Please email severe weather reports and pictures to