Getting the Most Out of the NWS Jacksonville Website

Getting the Most Out of the NWS Jacksonville Website
by Scott Carroll - Webmaster

Severe Weather Table | Forecasts At-A-Glance | Weather Headlines | Jacksonville Beach Weather | Daily Climate Table | Yearly Climate Table
Climate Calendar | NOAA Weather Radio Info Tropical Activity Table | Graphical Local Tropical Statement | Local Tropical Video 

SEVERE WEATHER TABLE (Severe Weather Page)
Severe Weather Table Severe Table Key
Current watches, warnings, and advisories are depicted by icon for each forecast zone.  Place your cursor over each icon to see the type of watch/warning/advisory along with the valid time and expiration time.  Click on the icon to see the text product.  If this is a tornado warning, severe thunderstorm warning, flood warning, severe weather statement, special marine warning, or significant weather alert, a dynamic GoogleTM map with the affected area will appear above the text product.  You can pan and zoom the map as well as look at a current radar overlay.  Click on the zone name for a complete list of current watches/warnings/advisories for the forecast zone.  The table key is located immediately to the right of the severe weather table.  Click on one of the colored tabs at the top of the table to switch between red, yellow, and green icons.  Icon colors are generally determined by priority.  This table is updated every minute (the severe page refreshes every five minutes).  Click on the "Map" tab at the top of the table to switch to the watch/warning/advisory map or on the "GoogleTM Map" tab for a dynamic GoogleTM map with convective warnings and statements depicted. These affected areas are drawn by NWS forecasters and coded at the bottom of each product.  An example of the GoogleTM map is shown below...

Polygon Sample

Forecast At-A-Glance
Prevailing daytime weather is indicated by the picture. Forecast maximum and minimum temperatures are indicated for the next 2 days along with rain chances.  Click on the weather pictures (such as partly cloudy icon) for the complete forecast for that location.  Click on the graph icon icon for an hourly graphic representation of the forecast (meteogram).  Click on the table icon icon for an hourly tabular representation of the forecast.  Click on the audio icon icon for an audio version of the forecast (same as what plays on NOAA Weather Radio).  Click Lo for the forecast minimum area map and click Hi for the forecast maximum area map.

Weather Headlines
This section lists expected major weather hazards for the week, planned server outages, special announcements, reminders, upcoming events, stories, recent storm surveys and write-ups, and local outlooks. A blinking notification will appear for any local convective watches and warnings.  Safety information is linked to certain key words in weather hazards.  The Skywarn activation level is indicated in the upper right portion of the table (green is no activation, yellow is self-activation, and red is activation requested).  The full text of the hazardous weather outlook is available in the title bar.  Click on the audio icon icon for hazardous weather outlook audio.

Jax Beach WeatherThis table is basically a color coded representation of the surf zone forecast for the Northeast Florida coastal waters.  Wind speed and direction information is in abbreviated form (">" indicates increasing, "<" indicates decreasing, "G" indicates wind gusts).  The surf zone forecast text can be accessed by clicking the more icon icon.  The audio forecast is available by clicking the audio icon icon.  A rip current safety link and an ultra-violet index FAQ (frequently asked questions)  link are located at the bottom of the table.

DAILY CLIMATE TABLE (Main Page and Climate Page)
Daily ClimateThis table is available both on the main page and the climate page.  Daily climate data is available for 4 sites:  Jacksonville (JAX), Gainesville (GNV), Alma (AMG), and St. Simons Island (SSI).  The location can be changed by clicking on one of the 4 tabs at the top of the table. The complete climate summary text product can be accessed by clicking the more icon icon, and the audio version can be listened to by clicking the audio icon icon.  The maximum and minimum temperature is listed along with the departure from normal (negative numbers in parentheses mean below normal). Rainfall for the month-to-date and year-to-date are listed along with the departure from normal through the current day.  Links to monthly climate summary pages (F6's) from the current month and the previous month are provided on the next line. Average and records for the current day and the next day are listed next.  The year of the record is listed next to the record.  An asterisk indicates that the record also occurred in other years previous to the one listed.  Links to the previous, current, and next month's averages and records appear at the bottom of the table.

Yearly Climate Table
This table lists basic climate information for the last 12 months at Jacksonville, Gainesville, Alma, and St. Simons Island.  The user can change which location is displayed by clicking on one of the tabs at the top of the table.  For departure information, below normal is indicated by blue text and above normal is indicated by red text.  The month and year at the top of each column is a link to that month's full climate summary (F6).  Links to each months normals and extremes are provided in the bottom 2 rows of the table.  Links below the table are provided for the site's all-time extremes and monthly normals, extremes, and station narrative.

Climate Calendar
Users can select a local climate station, the month, and the day, then click the go icon icon.  A daily almanac will appear with the day's normals and records.  This data will be followed by a list of weather which occurred during the previous few years on that date.

NWR Transmitters NWR SAME Codes
The first table, located on the Local Transmitters Page, lists each NOAA Weather Radio transmitter located within the NWS Jacksonville County Warning Area (CWA).  In addition, other transmitters whose broadcast range covers portions of the Jacksonville CWA are also listed.  The office responsible for providing programming for each transmitter is listed beneath the transmitter location.  The transmitter call sign, frequency, power, and counties served are listed.   Click on the popup icon icon under "Signal" to open a computer-generated signal coverage map for each transmitter.  Click on the popup icon icon under "Counties" to open a map of the counties covered by the transmitter. Watches, warnings, and advisories will be provided for each of these counties along with 1050 Hz and/or SAME (Specific Area Message Encoder) tones as appropriate.  Click on the audio icon icon to listen to an audio loop of current products from NOAA Weather Radio.  Please note that this is not streaming audio and not the entire NOAA Weather Radio broadcast.  

The second table, located on the Local SAME Codes Page, is a list of every county and marine zone in the Jacksonville CWA along with the associated SAME code, transmitters which cover the area, and each transmitter's call sign.  You can find your county's SAME code in this table for programming your SAME-enabled NOAA Weather Radio receiver.

TROPICAL ACTIVITY TABLE (Main Page and Tropical Page)
Tropical TableThe Tropical Activity table contains a wealth of information about current tropical systems in the Atlantic, Caribbean Sea, and the Gulf of Mexico.  Each cyclone for which the National Hurricane Center (NHC) is issuing advisories is listed.  The type (tropical depression, hurricane, etc.) and name of the cyclone are listed first along with the hurricane category if applicable.  Click on the audio icon icon to listen the audio version of the advisory.  Place your cursor over the track icon icon to see a list of major cities and the distance between those cities and the cyclone in question.  Click on the news feed icon icon for the NHC news feed for the cyclone.  Next, the advisory number and issuance time are listed, followed by the latitude, longitude, maximum sustained winds, and distance to Mayport (roughly the center point of the Jacksonville CWA Atlantic coastline).  This is followed by a pull-down menu with the following selections:  public advisory text; NHC forecast track map; infra-red and visible satellite loops centered over current cyclone coordinates; hurricane, 50 knot, and tropical storm force wind probability graphics from the NHC; mariners 1-2-3 rule graphic; cyclone wind history graphic; NHC discussion text; and the latest marine advisory.  A link is provided to our graphical local tropical statement page and latest tropical video if they are available.  Finally, a link to our hurricane safety page is provided.  This page has a checklist of hurricane preparation tips, and a printable version is available.  This table will always appear on the website, even if there is no current tropical activity or if we are not within hurricane season.

GRAPHICAL LOCAL TROPICAL STATEMENT (Graphical Local Tropical Statement Page)
Tropical GraphicsThis page is produced by local NWS meteorologists if a tropical system is forecast to affect the area (generally when a text tropical local statement is being issued for the area).  Maximum threat levels for wind, storm surge, flooding, and tornadoes are depicted on the bar graphs.  Areal depictions of these threats are displayed on maps in the middle of the page.  More detailed information about each threat can be found by clicking either the appropriate bar graph or map.  At the bottom of the page, NHC graphics for each current cyclone can be found.

LOCAL TROPICAL VIDEO (Main Page and Graphical Local Tropical Statement Page)
Tropical Video
Links to locally produced tropical videos will appear both over the front page weather headlines section and at the top of the graphical local tropical statement page.  If no current video is available, a link to the National Hurricane Center graphical tropical weather outlook will be provided.  The video is actually an Articulate presentation with audio commentary from a National Weather Service meteorologist.

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