Severe weather prep: Learn your county

The National Weather Service in Birmingham tweeted out an interesting statistic in early April - Less than half the students at a local high school could locate their home county on a map of Alabama.

It is imperative you learn not only where your county is located, but where your town is within your county. This is because we'll use county names to identify where severe weather watches and warnings are in effect. We'll also use city and town names when tracking storms as they move through the Tennessee Valley. By knowing you're location you can follow our coverage, and prepare for storms more easily. It's also recommended that you study nearby counties and towns, so that you'll know if storms are nearby.

To help, we've attached two maps of Tennessee and two maps of Alabama. For each state you'll find a blank map and a map with the county names. You can study the map with the county names on it and then test yourself by trying to identify your county and surrounding counties on the blank map.

Alabama:

Tennessee:

Stay weather aware!

"Familiarize yourself with some of the bigger areas, county names as well. It only takes about a minute to kind of grasp where you are," said Todd Barron, NWS Huntsville Warning Coordination Meteorologist. "We speak the language of geography. Every time we send out some sort of impact message, it's going to reference a city or place of interest."

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