New SPC Outlook Enhancements

Bd4V_FoCcAAVvM0.jpg largeThe storm prediction center has now launched a new way that they will be evaluating risk outlooks. Instead of the old 3 risk level (slight, moderate, high), they will now be using a 5 step risk level.

The new 5 step outlook will go like this. The old way, when there was just a threat for thunderstorms with a small severe risk, a “see text” would be issued. This is no longer the case. There will be no see text, instead it will be replaced by marginal. The next step is the slight risk, however, this zone is now broken up into two levels. Instead of the old slight risk zone, you will now have slight risk and enhanced risk. The enhanced risk is the upper end of the slight risk. Moderate and high risks will be left the same.

There are also changes to the day two outlook as well. For a high risk to now be issued on day 2, it now has to be a 60% hatched zone, which translates to not seeing too many high risks being issued on day two. For a high risk to now be issued on day two you will have to have higher certainties.

I would image that there will be a lot of confusion now with the word enhanced. When thinking of the word enhanced, one will think that is at a higher level than moderate. When in reality it is the step below moderate. What is your opinion on the new change? Let us know by leaving your comment below on this article and voice your opinion on our Facebook page.risk

Zach Sharpe

My name is Zach Sharpe. I am the president and forecaster for the Iowa Storm Chasing Network. You can find me on Twitter @Stormchaserzach and on Facebook at:

(3) Comments

  1. This is good for those of us who understand the 5 levels but Im afraid that those who do not understand the difference between a watch and a warning will be further confused. The ol weatherwise or otherwise cliche.

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