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Weather Services for Emergency Management

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Presentation on theme: "Weather Services for Emergency Management"— Presentation transcript:

1 Weather Services for Emergency Management
Meteorological Service of Canada Weather Services for Emergency Management Edmonton July 11, 2004 Calgary June 2005 Pine Lake July 14, 2000 (Dennis Dudley) Calgary August 9, 1999 W Maple Creek, June 19, 2010 (Kevin Wingert) Calgary November 27, 2011 John Paul Cragg March 2012

2 Weather Services for Emergency Management
Environment Canada Meteorologists, Who We Are The Impacts Of Weather On Saskatchewan Weather Information That Environment Canada Provides And Where You Can Find It Extra Services Provided To EMO Future EC Weather Services

3 Warning Preparedness Meteorologist
Focus on Severe/High Impact weather Media spokesperson Severe/High Impact Weather Work with Emergency Measure Organizations (Environment Canada products and services, weather safety and preparedness, reviewing and participating emergency exercises, etc.) Storm Site Surveys (major weather event)

4 PASPC - Largest area of responsibility in the world
~140 forecast regions Over 800 warning regions Large marine responsibility 9 Doppler Radars




8 The impacts of weather

9 Natural Disasters In Canada over the last century,
80% of all natural disasters were Weather or Water related!!! (Pine Lake July 2000, photo courtesy Dennis Dudley EC)

10 Emergencies – Direct Result of Weather
Thunderstorms (large hail, damaging winds, intense lightning, flash flooding) Damaging winds (non Thunderstorm) Heavy Rains (flooding) Tornadoes (Saskatchewan ~ 12/year) Heavy Snow Blizzards Extreme Wind chills Freezing Rain

11 1991-2010 avg. Severe Thunderstorm Event Stats
Event Type Alberta Saskatchewan manitoba Total HAIL 49 47 32 128 WIND 14 18 11 44 TORNADO 12 9 31 RAIN 7 6 21 TOTAL 81 84 59 224 Of course, this only includes the events we are told about or otherwise detect!


13 Plus Lightning! Total Lightning Days Summer 2010

14 Flooding July 1st 2010– Thunderstorm complex tracked through central SK into the MB Interlake. Golf ball to baseball sized hail in central SK and flash flooding in Yorkton, SK.

15 Flooding July 22nd 2010– Slow-moving intense thunderstorm produced 125 mm (5 inches) of rain in the North Battleford.

16 Tornadoes Widespread Damage from Devastating F3 Tornado in Kawacatoose First Nation and around Raymore and Semans, July 2, 2010.

17 Winter Severe Weather Kills and injuries many more Canadians than Summer Severe Weather Traffic collisions Snow shovelling Slips and falls Hypothermia/exposure to cold Storms on a massive scale with large impacts

18 Scale of a Summer Storm One storm covering part of a county

19 L Snow Scale of a Winter Storm
One storm covering thousands of square kilometres L X Snow Heavy Rain Showers Freezing

20 Emergencies – Weather Secondary Impact
Major Fires Well Blow-outs Pipeline ruptures Train Derailments Major Chemical spills/releases Etc.

21 Weather Information that Environment Canada provides and where you can find it

22 Environment Canada Watch/Warning Program
Environment Canada’s Weather Service number 1 mandate is to provide Canadians with as much lead time as possible in advance of severe events throughout the year

23 Weather Warnings, Weather Watches and Special Weather Statements

24 Special Weather Statement
Significantly unusual and noteworthy weather that does not necessarily meet weather warning criteria Early or Late seasonal Snowfall (less than 10 cm) Extensive fog, smoke or airborne dust Patchy freezing drizzle Lead time 12 hours to 2 days

25 Weather Watch WATCH - Yellow Alert
Nothing may be happening, but the potential exists for severe thunderstorms to develop within the next few hours (watch generally issued with 2-6 hrs lead time) Stay tuned for updated forecasts/warnings Summer (Thunderstorm and Tornadoes) - target lead time Tornado watch: 1 to 2 hours - target lead time for Thunderstorm watch: 6 hours Winter (Winter Storms) - target lead time 12 to 48 hours Severe Thunderstorm Watches are issued when conditions are favourable for the development of severe thunderstorms with large hail, heavy rain, or damaging wind, as identified by the severe weather analysis. Objective Criteria: RAIN (MB, SK, AB) - 50 mm or more of rain in 1 hour or less, or 75 mm in 3 hours or less. RAIN (NT, NU) - 25 mm or more of rain in 1 hour or less. HAIL (MB, SK, AB) - 20 mm or larger in diameter HAIL (NT, NU) - 12 mm or larger in diameter WIND - gust of 90 km/h or greater (including  Crowsnest, Cardston and Lethbridge regions) TORNADO - tornado or waterspout spotted (only includes tornadic waterspouts) Subjective criteria: RAIN - flooding which causes damage or serious inconvenience, but does not meet the objective criteria HAIL - significant damage, but less than 20 mm in diameter (such as when accompanied by a strong wind) WIND - wind less than 90 km/h when there is significant damage Target lead time for a Severe Thunderstorm Watch is 6 hours.

26 Weather Warning WARNING – Red Alert
Tornado and Severe Thunderstorm Warnings Severe weather is occurring or immanent, Take immediate action! Other Weather Warnings Severe weather is occurring or is expected to occur within the next 12 hours Summer (Tornadoes and Severe Thunderstorms) - target lead time for Tornado Warnings: 30 minutes - target lead time for Severe Thunderstorm Warnings: 30 minutes Other Weather Warnings (Blizzard, Snowfall, Rainfall, Wind, etc) - target lead time 12 hours

27 Weather Watch – Be aware of the potential dangers!

28 Weather Warning – Take Action!

29 Lightning… Environment Canada Does not issue Watches and Warnings if lightning is the only threat.



32 Large Scale Regions – Forecasts, Watches, Winter Warnings

33 Small Scale Warning Regions – Severe Thunderstorm or Tornado

34 Radar Imagery Imagery available in near real-time
Loops at 10 minute intervals over a 1 or 3 hour period

35 Historical Weather Data

36 Seasonal Forecasts

37 Seasonal Forecasts

38 Seasonal Forecasts

39 Seasonal Forecasts

40 (*62 City Pages)

41 Weatheradio Continuous broadcast of weather info
Line of sight broadcast…trees, hills may disrupt signal Standby mode  Tone Alert when Warnings issued Specific Area Message Encoding – (SAME) Get the Warnings for YOUR area Special frequencies…so require a special receiver

42 Extra Services Provided To EMO

43 Environment Canada EMO Training Sessions
Weather Services for EMO’s Weather Safety and Weather Preparedness (general weather) Storm Recognition (summer focus)

44 Emergency Exercises Assist in hazard identification and risk assessment Assist in exercise design Provision of mock weather bulletins Presentation on severe weather as prelude to exercise

45 EC Storm Prediction Centres
To be used by Emergency Management Personnel (municipal, provincial or federal) for major emergencies or catastrophic events when; Current weather forecast lacks detail necessary to combat situation or Significant discrepancy between EC weather forecast and current conditions

46 Wabamum, AB August 3, 2005 43 Rail cars derailed
Up to 1.3 million litres of heavy Bunker C Fuel Oil spilled from rail cars Spilled substance made it to the lake Emergency request made to Environment Canada to provide specialized point weather forecast to assist clean-up operations

47 Specialized Product

48 Tsuu T’ina Nation Garbage Fire Feb 15, 2012
(SW Calgary, Feb 15/12, Rick Donkers YYC Herald)

49 Hythe AB, Gas Well Blow-Out
February 24, 2010 Gas well blow-out Environment Canada Environmental Emergency Response Section (Dec 20, 2011 Port Lambton On Marina fire, dispersion model information available in 58 minutes) (Photo courtesy CBC News)

50 Specialized Product

51 Future EC Weather Services

52 Future EC Weather Services – I-Alert

53 Future EC Weather Services – I-Alert (email notification)

54 Future EC Weather Services – I-Alert

55 I-Alert Output (Short Message) (Long Message)

56 MASAS (Multi-Agency Situational Awareness System)
Goal: Enable sharing of location based situational awareness non-sensitive information and alerts between Emergency Management and Response Agencies

57 MASAS (view or apply to sign up)
(technical details)

58 Future EC Weather Services “Early Notification Project”
Providing some type of information service to highlight significant weather for a 3 day period Focus on “High Impact Weather” Base weather information on known weather sensitivities

59 EMO Weather Outlook (Example)
Significant Weather Discussion for Ontario Provincial Emergency Operations Centre provided by Environment Canada’s Ontario Storm Prediction Centre issued at 5:00 AM EST  Friday  20 January 2012.  Discussion valid for today, tonight and  Saturday with an outlook for Sunday. Today… Cold Arctic air will generate flurries and localized snow squalls to the east of Lake Superior, affecting Hwy 17. A snow squall watch will likely be upgraded to a warning as the squalls intensify later this morning. Snowfall amounts up to 15 centimetres are possible. Otherwise no significant weather is expected. Tonight... Flurries and squalls east of Lake Superior will gradually weaken and shift south. An area of snow from a passing disturbance south of the Great Lakes will give upwards of 5 cm across southwestern Ontario (grazing the GTA). There is high confidence in this event.  Saturday… No significant weather is expected.  Outlook for Sunday... A more significant disturbance will head towards the upper Great Lakes with 10 to 15 centimetres of snow possible around Lake Superior and northeast toward Hearst and Timmins.

60 In Closing; (Emergency Environment Canada Weather Services Contact Number) Specialized Emergency Services for EMO’s (emergency phone consultation, atmospheric dispersion products, specialized forecasts for longer term catastrophic situations, etc.) I can be contacted at or after May 1st

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