Severe Weather Awareness Week: Watches and Warnings

Posted at 6:25 PM, Apr 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-16 20:25:53-04

This week has been designated Colorado Severe Weather Awareness Week. Therefore, we’ll be digging into a different topic in the realm of severe weather each day this week for a refresher as we head into severe weather season. Our first topic to kick off the week is Watches and Warnings.

A watch is issued for a large area when conditions are right for severe weather to happen. This basically means that severe weather could happen and you should be alert to the weather throughout the day and know what to do if that weather happens.

A warning is issued based on a specific storm and covers a smaller area, usually the size of a county or two depending on the size and orientation of the storm.  Warnings mean that severe weather has is occurring or will occur shortly. If a warning is issued you should take safety precautions. 

A Severe Thunderstorm Warning is issued when a storm could have wind gusts of 58 mph or greater and/or hail one inch in diameter (roughly the size of a quarter) or larger.

A Tornado Warning is issued when rotation has been indicated on radar or a tornado has been reported on the ground.

A Flash Flood Warning is issued when water is rising quickly and could threaten life and property.