LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- Some of the best minds in weather forecasting were in Lawton today for a workshop with emergency management leaders.
Over 100 people took part, including representatives from the national Storm Prediction Center and the National Weather Service, and our own First Alert Weather team. The weather experts shared their experiences tracking storms in southern plains.
When it comes to tornadoes, thunderstorms, or ice storms, the main focus for meteorologists, emergency managers, and school or business leaders is communication.
"Communication is key if we were not able to communicate or we didn't communicate well and have to tools to communicate well it would really be detrimental to the mission of the weather service and what everyone is striving to do is to keep people safe from the severe weather," said Bowers.
Building relationships with the National Weather Service is important for First Alert Meteorologist Mandy Bailey.
"Basically it's super important for us to have great relationship with them because its just like a train trying to travel down the tracks, if parts of the train in the middle are falling off its not going to travel very far so if our information doesn't go across very well and people have conflicting info its going to be hard and take all of that information," said Bailey.
Meteorologists from Texas and Oklahoma answered questions and shared ways they use social media, TV, and the radio to communicate when it comes to significant weather.
"Its always nice to hear from those that are not working directly with us in the media what we can do better to help our emergency managers in this area, the school systems, and military everybody the ways that we can more effectively communicate with them to pass along the serve weather information," said Bowling.
Dr. Laura Myers,a social scientist who researches weather, reminds us that meteorologists take their responsibility for protecting the public very seriously.
"There are different but they are all professional and that's what makes them really motivated to not do the hype they know they are trying to increase that awareness without scaring people so the difference are just in the way they do it. It can be in their mannerism, its the way that they show that it is really serious its the way they provide that information so those are the unique differences they are trying to find way to capture the attention of the public," said Myers.
The emergency managers and first responders who took part in today's workshop gave their feedback to the forecasters.Everybody came away from the meeting feeling like they had learned something from each other. The National Weather Service says its was so successful, they may have another workshop next year.