Weather Watch or Weather Warning? Here’s the Difference

The National Weather Service accompanies their weather forecasts with the terms ‘Watch’ or ‘Warning.’  These terms are used to alert residents about potentially dangerous weather in their area.  It is important to know what the differences are between weather ‘Watches’ and weather ‘Warnings.’

When a weather watch is in effect, it means residents should watch the sky for signs of dangerous weather and listen to a NOAA radio or the Red Cross Emergency App for the latest information.  Severe weather can happen so quickly, formal weather warnings can’t be issued in time.  A weather watch alerts residents that the conditions for severe weather are in place so be alert and careful.

A weather warning alerts residents that there is dangerous weather directly threatening the area.  A weather warning means the event is occurring and residents should take immediate precautions to ensure their safety.  Here in southern Nevada, residents are most likely to be effected by a thunderstorm of flash flood warning.  When this notice is issued, move to a safe area in the house and do not venture outside unless ordered to evacuate.

The Red Cross urges residents to Be Red Cross Ready.  Click here to find out more about the flagship Red Cross disaster preparedness program.  Also, get the latest weather information and preparedness tips sent to the palm of your hand by downloading the Red Cross Emergency App for free on your mobile device.

Visit for more information from the National Weather Service – Las Vegas.

Be Red Cross RDy


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