WKRN News 2 Weather Authority Visits Campus

On Wednesday, Oct. 3, APSU hosted WKRN News Channel 2’s University Weather Authority program in the MUC ballroom.

Channel 2’s University Weather Authority program reaches viewers throughout their viewing area and is headed by chief meteorologist Danielle Breezy and morning meteorologist Jared Plushnick.

Breezy and Plushnick’s dedication to weather drives their program and causes them to go out into the community and share their knowledge.

The goal of Breezy, Plushnick, and their team is to educate the public about severe weather and how to protect yourself when it comes in.

The program serves as a community outreach and educational experience.

“This (the University Weather Authority program) is a great way for us to come out to meet the viewers, and it’s a total team effort.” Plushnick said. “You watch us. We help you. You help us. That’s how it works.”

This open style forum and discussion creates an environment which invites local members of the community to ask questions about severe weather and how to protect themselves from its potentially harmful effects.

“Understanding the weather in your area is important,” Hector Gardea said, camera man for News 2. “It helps you stay alive when you understand that you’ve got severe weather coming, and why you need to take the proper precautions.”

When individuals understand the different types of weather, it can be potentially life-saving.

This event helps community members to become storm spotters who can see what might be a threat and therefore, take the appropriate measures of protection.

It also helps the public become more familiar with their local storm spotters like Breezy and Plushnick which creates a sense of trust.

When the public trusts their meteorologists, more harmful situations are avoided.

“It’s important to learn who’s storm spotting, and teach them about storm spotting so that they can tell what a funnel cloud is compared to a tornado, hail sizes (and) rain amounts,” Plushnick said.

Weather spotting and the ability to differentiate between the types of weather and how to understand it is vital for the public to know.

The Montgomery County Director of Emergency Management Ed Baggett and National Weather Service meteorologist Krissy Hurley also were in attendance.

Baggett talked to those present about the importance of heeding weather alerts and taking shelter.

Baggett also discussed the importance of the weather sirens.

Hurley discussed the difference between tornados and funnel clouds.

Hurley also taught a storm spotter certification class after Breezy, Plushnick and Baggett’s presentations, respectively.

News Channel 2 anticipates more stops on their Weather Authority University outreach program in the spring.

WKRN offers their StormTracker App which provides dynamic information about severe or winter weather.

This app showcases weather forecasts and alerts which are issued after subscription to the service.

The app provides updated Doppler radar data from across the nation as well as hour-by-hour forecasts.