Free storm spotter class to be offered in Camdenton

Published: Oct. 21, 2019 at 4:32 PM CDT
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Beth Phillips and Eric Hoover have been storm spotters for a combined 25 years.

"Anybody can be a storm spotter," Phillips said. "I'm a tour guide. We have storm spotters who are janitors in school. We have bus drivers."

But, why do they do it?

"For me, it's a thrill to watch storms as they come through, but more to warn the public as it comes through and give first hand knowledge to the National Weather Service."

For the last five years, the Camden County Emergency Management Agency has teamed teams up with the Lake Area Storms Spotters and the National Weather Service to offer a free class to the public to become a storm spotter.

"This is a learning experience for you personally to understand weather a little bit better, and what you're seeing out there," said Ron Gentry, Director of the Camden County EMA.

Students in the class will learn how to spot possible tornadic activity, as well as learn what local authorities look for from storm spotters field reporting of severe weather. In the field.

But, just because someone takes the class, they don’t have to become a storm chaser.

"Just because you take the course doesn't mean you're going to be out watching storms and getting your vehicle rockin' and rollin' in the winds," Gentry said. "This knowledge will go with you wherever you go."

The free class starts at 6:00 p.m. Tuesday, October 22, and will be held at the Emergency Management Agency Building in Camdenton. Those who want to attend are encouraged to come a little early for a provided dinner.