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Office of the Federal Coordinator for Meteorology


National Severe Local Storms Operations Plan

Local Storms, Large Threats

Severe storm over the eastern United States.

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National Severe Local Storms Operations Plan

In 1967, the Federal Coordinator for Meteorological Services and Supporting Research received an interagency request to develop the first National Severe Local Storms Operations Plan (NSLSOP). This plan is the 26th version of the NSLSOP and is one of several operations plans produced under the auspices of the Federal Coordinator.

Because of their intensity, small spatial scale, and tendency for rapid development, severe local storms present a great challenge to both the science of meteorology and to the interagency cooperation required to disseminate warning information rapidly. This plan outlines the responsibilities of the various U.S. Federal agencies that provide meteorological services in observing, forecasting, and warning of severe local storms. It also defines meteorological terms used by the agencies preparing severe local storms forecasts and warnings; identifies operational warning criteria and procedures; and discusses communications, observations, and some public release aspects of warnings for severe local storms.