Changes coming to severe thunderstorm alerts

Published: Jul. 27, 2021 at 6:38 PM CDT
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SHERMAN, Texas (KXII) - Next week, the National Weather Service plans to implement new alerts for severe thunderstorms.

“I think it will help provide safety and preparedness and protect lives and property in the Texoma and surrounding areas,” said Jennifer Dunn, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service Office in Fort Worth.

They’re breaking down severe thunderstorms into three categories of threat levels based on wind speed and hail size.

The lowest level of severity will be baseline.

Considerable falls in the middle and destructive ranks as the most dangerous.

KXII’S Chief Meteorologist, Steve LaNore, said a destructive thunderstorm with 80 mph winds could flip a mobile home, but a regular or baseline thunderstorm with 60 mph winds probably couldn’t.

“You can see the difference there in the level of danger, and that’s what it’s really all about, conveying that level of danger and the impacts it might have on the public,” said LaNore.

As long as Wireless Emergency Alerts are turned on, phones will receive a notification when it’s a destructive storm.

But Dunn said not to don’t expect too many of those destructive thunderstorm alerts.

“The good news is that we don’t get a whole lot of instances of 80 plus mile per hour winds,” said Dunn. “Baseball size hail, of course, can be a little more frequent, so we’re just adding another layer of protection to the warning program here.

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