Skywarn training

North Texas is about to enter the spring severe storm season and the National Weather Service is continuing the 2020 “Severe Weather Awareness Tour” across the region.

North Texas is about to enter the spring severe storm season and the National Weather Service is continuing the 2020 “Severe Weather Awareness Tour” across the region.

Skywarn is scheduled at 9 a.m. Saturday, March 14, at the Rockwall County Library.

The class is for established storm spotters, anyone with an interest in severe weather, and/or anyone who wants to learn more about the severe weather threats in North and Central Texas and how to be prepared. The class is free of charge and no pre-registration is necessary.

The program will feature an in-depth review and study of the various threats posed by severe thunderstorms, highlights severe weather safety and how area residents can report severe weather information back to the National Weather Service and local public safety officials.

“By coming to this training session, you will gain a better understanding of Texas’ severe weather season,” said

Tom Bradshaw, Meteorologist-in-Charge of the NWS Fort Worth Office. “Waiting until storms are on your doorstep is not the time to start thinking about severe weather preparedness. We hope you attend these free sessions to learn more about the severe storms that impact the region every year.”

In 2019, North and Central Texas experienced 40 tornadoes and several damaging straight-line wind events. Two major weather outbreaks struck Rockwall County last year.

• The National Weather Service confirmed EF-0 tornadoes occurred May 29, 2019, in and just east of the city of Rockwall, through the north side of Saginaw in Tarrant County and on the east side of Krum in Denton county.

• High winds on the night of Oct. 20, 2019 ,caused damage to several areas, with 11 tornadoes touching down in North Texas, including an EF-1 tornado with estimated winds of 90 mph which hit inside the city limits of Rockwall. The Rockwall Police Department indicated eight homes sustained minor to moderate damage as the storm moved west to east just north of Downtown Rockwall. Damage was reported from Sunset Hill to the west to Wisperwood to the east.

An EF-3 tornado hit North Dallas with winds of 140 mph, and an EF2 tornado landed on the southwestern side of Garland with estimated maximum winds of 135 mph.

Despite reports of dozens of structures being destroyed or damaged across the area, no serious injuries were reported as a result of the storms.

The often severe thunderstorms came in two waves  in connection with the arrival of a powerful cold front and also reportedly dropped more than two inches of rain at Rockwall Municipal Airport.

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