NOAA Reminds you to Give the Gift of Safety this Holiday Season

December 10, 2009

NOAA Weather radio.

High resolution (credit: NOAA)

A sample of the commercially available radios.

When searching for that special gift this holiday season, consider giving a potentially life-saving NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio. These radios sound an alarm when NOAA’s National Weather Service issues a warning for severe weather, such as a tornado or flash flood, and can relay civil emergency messages.

“A NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio could save your life some day,” says Jack Hayes, Ph.D., director of the National Weather Service. “When seconds count, NOAA Weather Radio provides critical information necessary to immediately take action and stay safe.”

NOAA All Hazards Weather Radios are sold in electronic stores, discount stores, and online retailers. Prices vary by model and available options, but typically range between $20 and $80.

Many units are small, portable and travel easily. The pocket radio model is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts, such as hikers and boaters. Battery backup power allows for portability and continued service during power outages, when televisions and computers would be out.

During an emergency, National Weather Service forecasters interrupt routine weather radio programming and send out a special tone that activates weather radios in the listening area. The tone alarm feature can sound an alert from a “standby” setting and provides immediate information about a life-threatening situation. Hearing-impaired people can also get these warnings by connecting weather radios with alarm tones to other kinds of attention-getting devices such as strobe lights, pagers, bed shakers and printed text equipment.

NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio is an essential item for every home, business and public area. “NOAA Weather Radio should be as common as a smoke detector,” added Hayes.

NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio, a component of the nation's Emergency Alert System, is comprised of a nationwide network of more than 1,000 transmitters directly linked to one of the local National Weather Service offices across the country.

NOAA understands and predicts changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and conserves and manages our coastal and marine resources.