National Weather Service Recognizing SageWest

December 18, 2018

The National Weather Service in Riverton, Wyoming is recognizing SageWest Health Care in Riverton and Lander as StormReady® on Tuesday, December 11 in Riverton and on Wednesday, December 12 in Lander.   

            “Through a partnership between the National Weather Service and emergency management community, the StormReady program encourages communities to take a proactive approach to improving local hazardous weather operations and public awareness," said Tim Troutman, Warning Coordination Meteorologist with the National Weather Service Riverton, Wyoming forecast office. SageWest Health Care officials will be presented with a recognition letter and a special StormReady® sign during a ceremony at SageWest Health Care in Riverton on Tuesday, December 11 at 2:00 p.m. and at SageWest Health Care in Lander on Wednesday, December 12 at 2:00 p.m. 

            The nationwide community preparedness program uses a grassroots approach to help communities develop plans to handle local severe weather and flooding threats. The program is voluntary and provides communities with clear-cut advice from the local National Weather Service forecast office and state and local emergency managers. The program began in 1999 with seven communities in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area being designated as StormReady communities.   Today, there are around 3,100 StormReady organizations.  SageWest Health Care is the sixth hospital to be recognized in the National Weather Service, Riverton, Wyoming Warning and Forecast area and across the state of Wyoming as StormReady.

“The StormReady program is designed to help organizations improve communication and safety skills needed to save lives — before, during and after a severe weather event,” said Tim Troutman, Warning Coordination Meteorologist for the forecast office.  To be recognized as StormReady, an organization must establish a 24-hour warning point and emergency operations center; have more than one way to receive severe weather forecasts and warnings and to alert the public and employees. Other requirements include creating a system that monitors local weather conditions; promoting the importance of public readiness through community seminars; and, develop a formal hazardous weather plan, which includes training severe weather spotters and holding emergency exercises.

            The StormReady® program is part of the National Weather Service's working partnership with the International Association of Emergency Managers and the National Emergency Management Association.  The StormReady® recognition will expire in three years, after which the county will go through a renewal process.