Butler County implements new severe weather warning system
Butler County has implemented a new weather alert system to monitor extreme weather conditions.
Emergency Coordinator Robert Myers with the Missouri State Management Agency said that while the agency is always looking for new ways to keep community members informed about severe weather, after a series of alerts in the fall and winter of 2021, the team has intensified its search for new ways to improve its abilities.
Myers explained that after a meeting in December, which took place in response to the then-recent tornado damage in Illinois and Missouri, he heard of the idea.
“My counterpart in Stoddard County had installed [of the cameras] and we got in touch with their team, and once the budget was approved, we ordered them,” Myers said. “We were happy to be able to respond so quickly.”
Omega Radar weather surveillance cameras, capable of capturing 360° views on video, will be mounted on antennas across the county.
“It’s related to our Poplar Bluff Severe Weather Response Teamthey have control to point them regardless of which direction the time is coming from — it helps us spot that and work with the National Weather Service to issue a warning if necessary,” Myers said.
The weather response team also created a Youtube channeland a phone app that allows community members to watch the live camera feed and spot weather conditions, with regular radar updates.
Myers said the cameras, which have been beneficial for winter weather so far, will also be helpful in helping spring weather with thunderstorms and possible tornadoes.
So far, four cameras have been installed and are actively monitoring weather conditions in Butler County.
Myers plans to continue expanding the use of the cameras and said another has been ordered for Qulin City, which he expects to see in operation in March.