Tulsa NWS Skywarn Storm Spotter Training

Storm Spotter Training 2021

Spotter training will take place virtually this spring season. 

Throughout eastern Oklahoma and northwestern Arkansas, trained and dedicated individuals monitor the skies around their communities during severe weather events. These storm spotters provide first-hand severe weather reports to their local officials, and to the National Weather Service in Tulsa, which are used to make critical warning decisions. Being a storm spotter not only means dedication but also training. Each winter and spring the Tulsa office of the National Weather Service trains members of police & fire departments, emergency management officials, and amateur radio operators on spotting techniques. Typically, the training is coordinated by a local group (such as an emergency management agency) and a NWS meteorologist serves as the guest instructor. The goal of the training is not just to recognize tornadoes, but to have some understanding of storm structure, which in turn better prepares the spotter for the extreme and unusual circumstances. Other topics covered include an update on the latest NWS technology and procedures, ideas for organizing/coordinating spotter groups, severe weather reporting, and important safety considerations. The training is free, and since this year’s training is virtual, it requires a preregistration.  The seminars listed below are open to the public.  Choose the session that you’d like to attend, click the registration link, and complete the information requested to register.

Follow this link to sign up for one of the available classes. https://www.weather.gov/tsa/spotter_training
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Arkansas Forestry Commission Wildland Firefighter Class, Crawford County

AFC Wildland Firefighter Class will be taught in Crawford County in Van Buren on July 17th. Call 479-369-2200 to reserved a seat and for location.

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Arkansas Forestry Commission Wildland Firefighter Class for Logan County

AFC Wildland Firefighter class will be presented at Paris in Logan County on April 5th and 6th. Location for the class will be at the Emergency Management training room, 205 East Maple Street. Call 479-963-3218 to reserve a seat.

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AFC Wild-land Firefighter Class Johnson County

Johnson County Rural Fire District 1 will be hosting a Arkansas Forestry Commission Wild-land Firefighter Class on Saturday April 10th, 2021 from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

For more information contact RFD-1 at 479-754-6383

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2021 Skywarn Storm Spotter Training

Due to Federal restrictions regarding COVID-19 for National Weather Service employees going out in the field for training, all Skywarn Storm Spotter training will be conducted virtually this year.

Click on the link and follow the instructions if you wish to participate virtually. https://www.weather.gov/tsa/spotter_training

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8-Hour Wild-Land Firefighter Course

The Arkansas Forestry Commission Wild-Land Firefighter 8 hour course will be offered in Harrison, Arkansas on Saturday April 24th.

To reserve a seat or for more information call 727-386-1555.

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Arkansas Fire Training Academy Classes at Watalula Fire Department

The following classes will be offered at the Watalula Fire Department. Class size is limited to 20.

March 27, 2021 – Exterior Fires and Advanced Exterior Fires 8:00 AM (Exterior Fires requires all prerequisites for live burns.)

March 19, 2021 – Protective Systems 6:00 PM

April 10, 2021 – Life Safety Initiatives I & II 8:00 AM

For more information contact Chief Frank Theising at (479) 209-3777

AFTA guidelines for COVID-19 will be followed.

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AFTA Guidelines for Off Campus Classes

From the Arkansas Fire Training Academy (AFTA)…

Because of the nature of our nation’s current situation, AFTA will not allow students to attend classes without a signed waiver and application to attend classes. The student without the above mentioned will not be allowed to attend class.

Reminder that course request forms will be turned in 30 days before the class and student applications must be in two weeks before the class starts.

Students shall have an application and waiver to the AFTA prior to attending the class. Anyone not on the roster will not be allowed to attend class.

Students will be screened each morning. A check sheet will be provided. Each student will need a sheet and will be filled out each day.

Class size will depend on size of classroom (students 6 feet apart).

Students are highly recommended to wear a reusable cloth mask.

Department must furnish hand sanitizer and cleaning wipes. Exception will be if student brings own hand sanitizer.

Students will wipe off desk twice a day, beginning of the day and after lunch.

Students will not collect together during breaks.

Bathroom use should be limited in number to maintain social distancing.

Bathrooms shall be cleaned as needed.


Students will maintain a social distance.

Groups will only come together as a team once face pieces are in place.

Once the skill is complete, social distancing will be maintained.

Students will have their own rehydrating supplies (water, Gatorade, etc.). No coolers or jugs of water for the entire class to use will be allowed.


Your local fire department chief or training officer will have additional information to share.

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