Academic Institution in State Declared "StormReady"
University is seventh
in nation to receive designation from National
Contact: Michael Parker (518) 437-4980
|(From left to right)
Vincent Idone, chair of the Department of
Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Interim President
John R. Ryan, UAlbany student interns with
the National Weather Service, Gene Auciello,
meteorologist-in-charge of the National Weather
Service's Albany Bureau, and Vincent T. Franconere,
UAlbany's Director of Environmental Health
and Safety, surround the signage reflecting
the University's StormReady designation.
ALBANY, N.Y. (April 30, 2004) -- As part of a
nationwide program to help communities prepare
against the ravages of severe weather, the National
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has designated
the University at Albany a StormReady community.
The University at Albany is the first university
in New York to achieve StormReady status, and
is the seventh university to achieve StormReady
status in the nation. The University will receive
signage declaring the campus a "StormReady
Community" on April 30.
StormReady is a voluntary program that gives
communities the skills and education needed to
survive severe weather -- before and during the
event. StormReady helps community leaders and
emergency managers strengthen their local hazardous
weather operations by ensuring that they have
the tools needed to receive life-saving NWS warnings
in the quickest time possible.
The StormReady program also serves as another
tool in the University's Campus Emergency Management
and Planning Initiative. Commissioned in response
to the 9/11 attacks, a committee was formed and
an emergency plan was developed to provide a management
framework to respond to major emergencies that
may threaten the health and safety of the university
community, or disrupt its programs and operations.
Weather emergencies account for 90 percent of
all presidentially declared disasters, leading
to 500 deaths per year and nearly $14 billion
"We are honored to receive the StormReady
designation, and I am pleased with the continued
efforts of our Department of Environmental Health
and Safety to promote the safest possible environment
for our students, faculty and staff," said
UAlbany Interim President John R. Ryan. "This
recognition is a testament to the University's
proactive approach to severe weather management
and preparedness in dealing with emergency situations."
“As a StormReady community, the University at
Albany has gained the skills necessary to survive
severe weather, both before and during the event,”
said Gene Auciello, Meteorologist-In-Charge of
the NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS) Forecast
Office at Albany. “Albany has a long history of
significant weather and it is the goal of StormReady
to reduce the impact of severe weather in the
state,” he continued. “The state experiences about
20 weather-related fatalities per year and we
would like to see that number reduced.”
Specifically, StormReady helps communities understand
the types of weather they can expect, when it
is most likely to occur, and how they can prepare
for it in advance. For example, the peak threat
for tornadoes in New York occurs during spring
and summer, yet most flooding occurs during the
late winter and spring with hurricanes and tropical
storms posing a summer and fall flood threat.
Much of the NWS preparedness information, awareness
materials, and other data can be accessed at a
website devoted to StormReady at www.stormready.noaa.gov.
The director of the Department of Environmental
Health and Safety at the University at Albany,
Vincent T. Franconere, stated, “The StormReady
program provides the university with clear-cut
weather warning and preparedness advice from a
partnership with the National Weather Service
and state and local emergency managers."
“The key to preparedness is understanding the
types of weather your area can expect and staying
tuned to NWS warning and forecast information.
Having NOAA weather radios in the home, office,
schools, churches, and other facilities to provide
around-the-clock weather information is an excellent
way to stay StormReady,” Auciello said.
"While Storm Ready is designed to prepare
communities as a whole, the actions of a single
individual can often mean the difference between
life and death. Every individual must be aware
of weather threats and constantly monitor them,”
The University at Albany is served by the modernized
NWS Weather Forecast Office located on the Albany
campus. The office is equipped with Doppler weather
radar, advanced computer and communication equipment,
automated observing systems, and data from weather
satellites, giving forecasters the ability to
provide communities with more accurate and timely
weather information than ever before.
NOAA’s National Weather Service is the primary
source of weather data, forecasts and warnings
for the United States and its territories. The
NWS operates the most advanced weather and flood
warning and forecast system in the world, helping
to protect lives and property and enhance the
NOAA is dedicated to enhancing economic security
and national safety through the prediction and
research of weather and climate-related events
and providing environmental stewardship of our
nation’s coastal and marine resources.
Other universities declared StormReady include
Northeastern Illinois, Abilene Christian University,
Maryland, Kentucky, Louisville, and Midwestern
State University in Texas. NOAA is an agency of
the U.S. Department of Commerce.