COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – This week is Tornado Safety Awareness Week. Despite having only two tornadoes touch down in our viewing area this year, our 1st Alert Weather Team is always looking for ways to better prepare you for severe weather. Our newest technology is Live Vipir Radar.
It’s faster, smarter and better prepares you for severe weather today than ever before.
“There are some computer algorithms that we will use with the software that will analyze the storm data a little bit better, minutes faster than some other sources that are available,” says WCBI Chief Meteorologist Keith Gibson.
And we all know too well how minutes matter when a storm is coming.
Storms that roll through Mississippi tend to occur while we’re sleeping.
“The storms that occur down here in Mississippi and Alabama tend to be some of the stronger storms as far as the tornado threat is concerned especially at night. Some of these products that we’ll eventually display here will really show where the wind shear is and where that big tornado threat is especially at night when it’s very difficult to see,” says WCBI Chief Meteorologist Keith Gibson.
With this new severe weather radar, we’ll also have what we call BTI – the Baron Tornado Index. It will provide you with a better idea of just how likely a storm will become tornadic.
“It’s generally just a number for what the expected tornado threat would be within a thunderstorm. If we are down into the ones or twos we are concerned but obviously not as concerned if the numbers are 6, 7, 8 or if they are 9 or 10 then we are really concerned depending on other things in the thunderstorm,” says WCBI Chief Meteorologist Keith Gibson.
This new radar will also help our team to better identify storm rotation, a ball of debris in the air and the direction of the storm, all with 1st Alert Vipir Radar.