Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS North Platte, NE

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NOUS43 KLBF 251205
PNSLBF

2014 SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK FOR NEBRASKA

TODAY IS TUESDAY AND MARKS THE SECOND DAY OF SEVERE WEATHER
AWARENESS WEEK FOR THE STATE OF NEBRASKA...WHICH CONTINUES THROUGH
FRIDAY...MARCH 28TH.

SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK PROVIDES THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
AN OPPORTUNITY TO TEST COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS AND TO GET POTENTIALLY
LIFESAVING INFORMATION OUT TO THE PUBLIC. NOW IS THE TIME FOR PEOPLE
TO REVIEW THEIR SAFETY PLANS AND BE PREPARED FOR SEVERE WEATHER
SEASON.

THE TOPIC FOR TODAY IS SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS. A THUNDERSTORM IS
CONSIDERED SEVERE WHEN IT PRODUCES HAIL THAT IS ONE INCH IN DIAMETER
OR LARGER...DAMAGING WINDS EQUAL TO OR GREATER THAN 58 MILES PER
HOUR...OR A TORNADO. THERE ARE NUMEROUS ASPECTS OF SEVERE
THUNDERSTORMS THAT POSE A THREAT TO LIFE AND PROPERTY. ALONG WITH
THE THREAT OF LARGE HAIL...DAMAGING WINDS...AND TORNADOES...EVERYONE
MUST ALSO BE AWARE OF THE POSSIBILITY OF DANGEROUS LIGHTNING AND
FLOODING. LIGHTNING...FLOODING...AND TORNADOES WILL BE DISCUSSED
LATER THIS WEEK. HAIL IS PRODUCED IN A THUNDERSTORM AS RISING
CURRENTS OF AIR...KNOWN AS UPDRAFTS...CARRY WATER DROPLETS TO A
HEIGHT WHERE FREEZING OCCURS. HAIL CONTINUES TO GROW INSIDE OF A
THUNDERSTORM UNTIL IT BECOMES TOO HEAVY AND CAN NO LONGER BE
SUPPORTED BY THE STORM UPDRAFT. ONCE THIS OCCURS...THE HAILSTONE
FALLS TO THE GROUND. LARGE HAIL IS AN INDICATION THAT A THUNDERSTORM
IS QUITE INTENSE WITH A VERY STRONG UPDRAFT. THE LARGEST HAILSTONE
EVER RECORDED IN THE UNITED STATES FELL ON JULY 23...2010 IN
VIVIAN...SOUTH DAKOTA WITH A DIAMETER OF 8 INCHES AND WEIGHT OF 1.94
POUNDS.

ANOTHER SIGNIFICANT SEVERE WEATHER THREAT IS DAMAGING WINDS...WHICH
CAN BE CAUSED BY AN EVENT KNOWN AS A DOWNBURST. A DOWNBURST IS A
SMALL AREA OF RAPIDLY DESCENDING AIR BENEATH A THUNDERSTORM. ONCE
THIS DESCENDING AIR HITS THE GROUND...SPREADS OUT IN ALL DIRECTIONS.
DOWNBURSTS AND THE RESULTING STRAIGHT LINE WINDS CAN CAUSE DAMAGE
COMPARABLE TO A TORNADO.

ANYTIME THE THREAT FOR SEVERE WEATHER EXISTS STAY UPDATED ON THE
LATEST WEATHER INFORMATION BY GOING TO THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
WEBSITE...WEATHER.GOV...OR BY TUNING IN TO NOAA WEATHER RADIO
ALL HAZARDS OR YOUR LOCAL TELEVISION AND RADIO STATION. MAKE SURE TO
WATCH FOR SIGNS FOR APPROACHING STORMS...SUCH AS DARKENING
SKIES...INCREASING WINDS...FLASHES OF LIGHTNING...AND THUNDER.
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK CAN BE FOUND AT
WEATHER.GOV/NORTHPLATTE.

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