Severe weather may be rumbling your way tomorrow, next week or next month. That’s one message Iowa emergency management officials are trying to get out to Iowans during this “Severe Weather Awareness Week.” Brad Small, senior forecaster at the National Weather Service office in Johnston, says weather watches are issued by the Storm Predictions Center in Norman, Oklahoma.Small says watches are issued based on the history of the storm or when forecast models show the storm may become severe. They usually are issued for a large area and sometimes for multiple states.Small says technology has helped meteorologists forecast whether storms are going to turn severe. He says the watches are issued to the public as a “heads-up” that nasty, potentially deadly weather may be on the way.A severe thunderstorm watch is issued when conditions are favorable for sustained winds higher than 58 miles-per-hour and/or large hail. A tornado watch is issued when conditions are favorable for the development of tornadoes and severe thunderstorms.
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