Finger on the Weather

Want to learn what kind of clouds form tornadoes? Here’s your chance

This large, slow-moving tornado passed between Abilene and Chapman in 2016.
This large, slow-moving tornado passed between Abilene and Chapman in 2016. Courtesy photo

Spring can’t be too far away.

The Wichita branch of the National Weather Service has released this spring’s schedule for storm identification training classes. Historically, they’ve been refresher courses for storm spotters, but anyone is welcome to attend the free classes, which last about two hours.

Weather officials encourage residents to attend so they are more knowledgeable about what type of cloud formations produce various forms of severe weather. Armed with that knowledge, they can make informed decisions about when and how to best seek shelter.

The weather service’s schedule features one class in each of the 26 counties of its coverage area in the southeast quarter of Kansas. The Sedgwick County class will be at 6:30 p.m. March 7 at Central Community Church, 6100 W. Maple.

The Reno County class will be held the next day at 6:30 p.m. at the Hutchinson Fire Training Center, 3201 E. 4th.

The Harvey County class will be at 6:30 p.m. March 2 in Lindley Hall of Santa Fe Middle School in Newton.

The Butler County class will be at 6:30 p.m. March 16 at the Point Event Center, 2101 Dearborn, in Augusta.

Additional storm identification classes put on by local emergency management departments in smaller towns will be announced later in the spring.

Stan Finger: 316-268-6437, @StanFinger

Find schedule online

The schedule of storm identification training classes being presented by the Wichita branch of the National Weather Service can be found online at www.weather.gov/ict/spottertalks.

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