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Help protect your community as a trained storm spotter

A tornado in a field with a graphic of a warning sign with a tornado on it.

BENTON, Ill. – In preparation for peak weather season, Illinois Extension is partnering with the Franklin County Emergency Management Agency and the US National Weather Service-Paducah to offer storm spotter training on March 5 in Benton.

The National Weather Service relies on trained volunteers to supplement Doppler radar information on severe storms and tornadoes. These dedicated individuals volunteer many hours to learn about and detect severe weather. Their valuable cooperation is important in the warning process. Weather reports from trained spotters are used along with Doppler radar data to issue warnings of tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, and flash floods.

The free training is Tuesday, March 5, 2024, at 6 p.m. at the Franklin County Extension office at 1212 Route 14 West, Benton, Ill., 62812. The Basic Storm Spotter class is two and a half hours, and all program materials are included. To register, visit

For information on the spotter program, contact

University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment. If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate in programming, contact Carrie Eldridge at Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time to meet your access needs.

About Extension

Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities. Illinois Extension is part of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences.