TEMA Shows Off Weather Balloon, Signs New EAS Plan
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Severe Weather Awareness Week continued Wednesday with a focus on tornadoes.
The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, along with the National Weather Service and the Tennessee Association of Broadcasters and other groups, are conducting educational activities and drills that started on Sunday and run through Saturday. A statewide tornado drill was held Wednesday at 9 a.m.
TEMA also showed off some of the tools they use to keep meteorologists and others informed.
One of them is a weather balloon that goes up twice a day to collect weather information. Meteorologists use those specifics to send out emergency alerts.
The state's Emergency Management Agency also signed an updated version of the Emergency Alert System Plan Wednesday morning, which includes notification alerts on wireless devices.
"We already had a big tornado outbreak just a couple of weeks ago and whether that's a sign of things to come in the season we don't know but we know there will be some severe there will be tornadoes and it's really up to everyone to be prepared and be ready," said Larry Vannozzi, NWS Meteorologist In Charge.
A storm system produced 22 tornadoes in Middle Tennessee in the early morning hours of January 30, 2013. According to NWS records, it was the largest January tornado outbreak in Middle Tennessee history, eclipsing the previous record of 12 tornadoes that occurred on Jan. 24, 1997. It also makes Jan. 30, 2013 the second biggest outbreak of tornadoes for any month in Middle Tennessee history.
March through May is when most tornadoes in Middle Tennessee happen. In 2012, tornadoes touched down in 28 counties, killing three and injuring 85.