Thursday, March 22, 2012 —
Do you ever wonder how much rainfall you received from a recent thunderstorm? How about snowfall during a winter storm? If so, then a new volunteer weather observing program needs your help! The Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow network, or CoCoRaHS, is looking for new volunteers across North Carolina. The grassroots effort is part of a growing national network of home-based and amateur rain spotters with a goal of providing a high density precipitation network that will supplement existing observations.
CoCoRaHS came about as a result of a devastating flash flood that hit Fort Collins, Colorado, in July 1997. A local severe thunderstorm dumped over a foot of rain in several hours while other portions of the city had only modest rainfall. The ensuing flood caught many by surprise and caused $200 million in damages. CoCoRaHS was born in 1998 with the intent of doing a better job of mapping and reporting intense storms. As more volunteers participated, rain, hail, and snow maps were produced for every storm showing fascinating local patterns that were of great interest to scientists and the public.
North Carolina became the twenty-first state to establish the CoCoRaHS program in 2007, and by 2010, the CoCoRaHS network had reached all 50 states with eight to ten thousand observations being reported each day. Through CoCoRaHS, thousands of volunteers, young and old, document the size, intensity, duration and patterns of rain, hail and snow by taking simple measurements in their own backyards.
Volunteers may obtain an official rain gauge through the CoCoRaHS website (http://www.cocorahs.org ) for about $27 plus shipping. Besides the need for an official 4 inch plastic rain gauge, volunteers are required to take a simple training module online and use the CoCoRaHS website to submit their reports. Observations are immediately available on maps and reports for the public to view. The process takes only five minutes a day, but the impact to the community is tenfold: By providing high quality, accurate measurements, the observers are able to supplement existing networks and provide useful results to scientists, resource managers, decision makers and other users.
“North Carolina has the most complex climate in the eastern U.S.,” said Ryan Boyles, state climatologist and director of the State Climate Office, based at North Carolina State University. “Data gathered from CoCoRaHS volunteers are very important in better understanding local weather and climate patterns.”
“An additional benefit of the program to the National Weather Service is the ability to receive timely reports of significant weather (hail, intense rainfall, localized flooding) from CoCoRaHS observers that can assist forecasters in issuing and verifying warnings for severe thunderstorms,” says David Glenn, CoCoRaHS State Coordinator and meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Newport/Morehead City.
How does one become a CoCoRaHS observer? Go to the CoCoRaHS website above and click on the “Join CoCoRaHS” emblem on the upper right side of the main website. After registering, take the simple online training, order your 4 inch rain gauge and start reporting!
“We are in need of new observers across the entire state and would like to emphasize rural locations,” added Glenn.
Thursday, March 22, 2012 —
DOT closes roads in Cabarrus due to flooding
Charlotte - Heavy rains over the last several hours have prompted the N.C. Department of Transportation to temporarily close several roads in Cabarrus County flooded by rising waters. Sections of Rocky River may reach 17 feet and spill over its banks today, while localized flooding is still possible across parts of the Charlotte region through this afternoon.
Highlight of Town Creek Under the Stars will be the Moon on March 15
Mount Gilead – Town Creek Indian Mound will host Town Creek Under Stars on Saturday, March 15 at 7:30 p.m. Participants will view the nearly full Moon and learn fun moon facts. The March full moon, called many different things by various American Indian tribes, was an important one in that it marked the end of cold weather and the beginning of spring
NCDOT Will Close A Section Of Wilshire Avenue In Cabarrus County For Bridge Replacement
The N.C. Department of Transportation will temporarily close a section of Wilshire Avenue in Concord at 8 a.m. Saturday, weather permitting. Crews will replace the bridge over Irish Buffalo Creek, requiring the road to remain closed through November 1.
Concord Mills adds Sea Life Charlotte-Concord to its brand of shopping
CONCORD – Concord Mills, the largest outlet and value retail shopping destination in North Carolina, has added Sea Life Charlotte-Concord to its roster of popular retail stores, plus family dining and entertainment options. Sea Life Charlotte-Concord will further solidify Concord Mills’ position as a leading attraction for local shoppers and visitors from across the U.S. and beyond, according to the shopping giant.
GRITS: The Musical returns to Wingate University this weekend
Wingate, N.C. – GRITS: The Musical (Girls Raised In The South) returns to The Batte Center at Wingate University this weekend. Based on southern stories in the book by Deborah Ford, Erica McGee, president of McGee Productions, wrote the script and songs for the musical. The musical premiered at Wingate University in 2008.
DENR staff working with utility at site of Dan River spill in Rockingham County
RALEIGH – Staff with the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources have been alerted to a spill of coal ash from a stormwater pipe into the Dan River in Eden and are on-site working with Duke Energy officials to control the spill to protect public health and the environment.
Wingate University Singers and Chamber Choir begin winter tour
Wingate, N.C. – The Wingate University Singers and Chamber Choir, under the direction of Dr. Kenney Potter, will be performing concerts around the state. They will perform sacred works from the 18th century as well as the 21st century. Additionally, they will be performing African-American spirituals and South African folk songs.
Town Creek Under the Stars will view Neptune and Mercury on Feb. 8
Mount Gilead – Town Creek Indian Mound will host Town Creek Under Stars on Saturday at 6 p.m. Participants will view Neptune and Mercury side-by-side in the western sky at sunset.
Charlotte man’s stop for soda leads to $100,000 win
RALEIGH – Vernard Jones stopped Monday morning to buy a soda at the Quick ‘N E-Z on West Trade Street in Charlotte. While there, he bought four Mega Bucks tickets for $5 each. As the Charlotte resident scratched off the second ticket, he found out he won big.
CBCC launches Pints for Pounds campaign
The Community Blood Center of the Carolinas (CBCC) has launched its fifth annual ‘Pints for Pounds’ campaign to support Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina. CBCC will donate seven pounds of food for every blood donation now through Feb. 28.
- More Regional Headlines
- DOT closes roads in Cabarrus due to flooding