148th Fighter Wing Earns StormReady Re-Certification

Carol Christenson and Michael Stewart from the National Weather Service present Col. Frank H. Stokes, 148th Fighter Wing Commander and Senior Master Sgt. Kelvin R. McCuskey, Installation Emergency Manager with a StormReady sign and certificate at the 148th Fighter Wing, Duluth, Minn., Nov. 13, 2013.  The sign and certificate recognized the Wing for being a StormReady community for another three years.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Ralph J. Kapustka/Released)

Carol Christenson and Michael Stewart from the National Weather Service present Col. Frank H. Stokes, 148th Fighter Wing Commander and Senior Master Sgt. Kelvin R. McCuskey, Installation Emergency Manager with a StormReady sign and certificate at the 148th Fighter Wing, Duluth, Minn., Nov. 13, 2013. The sign and certificate recognized the Wing for being a StormReady community for another three years. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Ralph J. Kapustka/Released)

DULUTH, Minn. -- The National Weather Service recognized the 148th Fighter Wing (148th FW) with StormReady re-certification on November 13, 2013 during a brief ceremony held at the Wing. The 148th FW was the first Air National Guard (ANG) unit to achieve StormReady certification back in 2010 and the first ANG unit to be re-certified in 2013.

StormReady is a nationwide program that helps communities better protect their citizens during severe weather. The program encourages communities to take a proactive approach to improving local hazardous weather operations and gives clear-cut guidelines on how to improve your overall approach when it comes to dealing with hazardous weather.

To obtain certification, communities must meet guidelines established by the National Weather Service in partnership with federal, state, and local emergency management professionals.

To be a certified StormReady community the 148th FW conducts annual hazardous weather and natural disaster exercises, train personnel to be skywarn spotters for the National Weather Service and have formal hazardous weather plans in place to guide them should there be a weather emergency.

"We are by no means storm proof but by being StormReady means we are better prepared to save lives and protect property from the onslaught of severe weather through advance planning, education and awareness," said Senior Master Sgt. Kelvin McCuskey, 148th FW Installation Emergency Manager. "At the 148th FW, we are fortunate to live in an area that has few severe weather events but also realize we certainly are not immune from them and our installation personnel are more likely now to recognize potentially threatening weather situations and act appropriately."

The 148th FW will be up for StormReady re-certification in 2016.