What Does A Twisting Storm Alert Mean?

The Weather Authority

Twisting Storm Alerts On Live Alert 19

For those of you who have Live Alert 19, you may have received an alert for a “Twisting Storm”, and then how likely a tornado was. That alert is generated by a computer analyzing radar data and the environment to determine when storms are rotating, and using something called the Baron Tornado Index to determine how likely a tornado is occurring or developing. The tornadic supercells in middle Tennessee earlier this week triggered Live Alert 19 to send out over 450 twisting storm alerts to actual Live Alert 19 users in the area.

The blue polygons here are twisting storm alerts sent out by Live Alert 19
The blue polygons here are Twisting Storm alerts sent out by Live Alert 19

We don’t advise you to treat a “Twisting Storm” alert like a Tornado Warning. Instead, it’s just a tap on the shoulder to let you know to start paying close attention, and seek out more information. 

What Is The Baron Tornado Index?

The  Baron Tornado Index is a ranking from 1 to 10, rating the likelihood of a tornado within that storm.

This ranking is made in real time, it’s NOT a forecast model. Live Alert 19 uses the BTI when sending out a Twisting Storm Alert to give a low, medium, or high chance of a tornado. We use the BTI here in studio as well as a tool to locate the most dangerous storms. 

Live Alert 19 Outside Of The Tennessee Valley

Live Alert 19 is a great way to keep up with the forecast in North Alabama and Southern Middle Tennessee, but it’s also still a valuable tool outside of the Tennessee Valley too. Live Alert 19 uses your GPS location on your device to give you the forecast and alerts for where you are. Live Alert 19 will still send you warnings and Twisting Storm alerts anywhere in the country.  That’s good, because we can’t go on TV to bring you information for storms everywhere you go. We have to focus our TV coverage on our Designated Market Area (DMA). But Live Alert 19 can let you know something is going on no matter where you are, and then you can check out local weather coverage where you are to get more information about what’s going on. 

Some places you can check for severe weather information outside of the Tennessee Valley:

Birmingham: CBS 42
Nashville: WKRN
Mobile/AL Gulf Coast/FL Panhandle: WKRG
Memphis: WREG
Dothan: WDHN
Auburn/Columbus, GA: WRBL
Knoxville: WATE

Download Live Alert 19 for iOS or Android.

– Alex Puckett

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