WeatherBug Brings Advanced Severe Weather Alerting — Enhanced by Total Lightning Detection — to National WeatherBug School Network
New Lightning Network Significantly Improves Warning Time over Traditional Systems
National Science Teachers Association Conference, New Orleans — WeatherBug®, a leading provider of consumer and professional weather services and operator of the world's largest weather network, announced today the availability of the WeatherBug® Total Lightning Network (WTLN) through the WeatherBug Schools program. WTLN is the first intracloud (IC) and cloud-to-ground (CG) lightning detection network to be available on a nationwide basis.
With WTLN, lightning strikes are monitored, confirmed and communicated via alerts to multiple locations through a variety of methods — mobile devices, computers and through strobe — audible alerting beacon/horn systems located in high visibility areas.
According to NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS), lightning strikes in America kill an average of 73 people each year and harm hundreds of others. "Lightning is one of the most underrated severe weather hazards, yet it ranks as the second-leading weather killer in the United States," said Frank McCathran, director, WeatherBug Education, Media and Club Safety. "With our advancements in lightning prediction and detection integrated with our alerting technology, schools can significantly improve risk management by providing up-to-the-second and accurate weather information for making critical decisions to help ensure the safety of staff and students."
The science of thunderstorm development and electrification are valuable lessons for academic studies. Understanding lightning draws upon various disciplines including atmospheric physics, electrical engineering, climatology and meteorology. WeatherBug has plans to incorporate this new data set into the WeatherBug School's program to engage students in the scientific process and in using technology in the same manner professional scientists do on a daily basis.
"Real-time weather information in the classroom is a great teaching tool and can help students develop concepts and skills in science and math," McCathran added. "In addition, students at all levels can benefit from better understanding the dangers of lightning and learning safety practices for both indoor and outdoor activities."
WeatherBug also provides schools with a comprehensive live GPS-enabled mobile weather alerting service, WeatherBug Protect, which can turn staff phones into potentially life-saving devices. No matter where they are located, they can receive critical weather alerts, including lightning alerting/notification via various methods. WeatherBug Protect is the first location-based mobile solution to proactively send customized alerts such as lightning, tornadoes, high wind, temperature extremes, and more from the WeatherBug Network and the NWS.
The WeatherBug Network is the world's largest surface observation network. Consisting of more than 8,000 weather sensors and cameras strategically located at schools, major sport venues and public safety facilities, the WeatherBug Network streams live weather information over the Internet to millions of consumers and professional users.
"All too often severe weather strikes with little or no warning. Schools need to do everything they can to try to keep children safe," continued McCathran. "We are proud to provide parents, students, and school staff and administrators with the added peace of mind knowing they are receiving the earliest warnings available."
WTLN uses broadband frequency monitoring on a national scale to detect IC lightning, critical for advanced prediction of severe weather. Monitoring the onset and development of IC lightning can significantly improve warning times over traditional radar technology for many severe weather events, including tornadoes, thunderstorms and downbursts. The detection of IC activity can also provide a 5-30 minute advanced lead time for predicting dangerous cloud-to-ground lightning.
The WeatherBug Schools Program (http://www.weatherbugschools.com) is a nationally recognized program which provides an engaging teaching tool for schools nationwide. The program enables teachers to use current and historical weather conditions in interactive, online lessons and activities to teach the fundamentals of the science of meteorology, geography and math, utilizing data from their own weather station or any of the thousands of weather stations in the WeatherBug Network.
For more information on the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network or WeatherBug Schools, please visit http://weatherbugprofessional.com or call 1.800.544.4429.
WeatherBug Consumer and Professional services (http://www.weatherbug.com and http://www.weatherbugprofessional.com) are trusted sources for dynamic weather information enabling people worldwide to make more informed weather-related decisions. Millions of consumers and professional organizations, including the National Weather Service, rely on WeatherBug information and solutions for personal and mission-critical decisions that safeguard lives, impact communities and improve business operations. WeatherBug is a brand of AWS Convergence Technologies, Inc (http://www.aws.com).