Emergency Weather Radio

You should invest in an Emergency Weather Radio, also called a NOAA radio (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association). It is an essential part of a comprehensive disaster preparedness solution for your family.

If a serious weather situation is looming, especially at night, this device will sound an alarm, even if it is turned off, and give you time to gather your family and head to a safe place. That alone makes it worth the $30 - $80 price tag. How much you pay depends on what extras you might want to have.

Emergency weather radios save lives

Here are a couple of reasons why having one is so critical:

  • Traditional Communications Infrastructure - Depending on exactly what kind of disaster strikes, normal communications infrastructure may be one of the first things to get knocked out. This would make communicating with friends, family, or authorities extremely difficult. In situations like these, having a radio at your home (or even a portable model that you keep with you) could quite literally be your lifeline to official instructions and bulletins when cell phones or even landlines may not be in working order.

  • Early Response Mitigates Damage - Another key point to keep in mind regarding disasters is that the earlier you are aware of them, the more you can do to mitigate potential damage. Having an emergency weather radio in your household will mean that you will be one of the first in your neighborhood to hear important news and bulletins, giving you the greatest time to react and the best chances of making it through unscathed.
solarlink noaa weather radio

When you purchase a newer NOAA radio, it will likely have SAME ALERTS. This is a digital encoding system which incorporates a new technology known as Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME). This allows receivers to sound an alert within a limited geographic area such as a county. This way you don't get "false alerts" for areas that don't pertain to you.

Here are some features of a weather alert radio that you might want to consider:

Home NOAA Radio Model:

  • Receives AM, FM, shortwave, and 7 pre-set NOAA weather channels with alert.
  • S.A.M.E. Technology
  • User Selectable Alert Type - Voice, Display, or Tone
  • Event Expiration Indicator
  • Alarm Clock with Snooze
  • Replaceable Rechargeable Battery
  • Public Alert Certified
    • Child Abduction Emergency (Amber Alert)
    • Biological Hazard Warning
    • Nuclear Power Plant Warning
    • Civil Emergency Message
    • Fire Warning
    • Landslide Warning

Here are two home models for you to consider:

  1. MIDLAND WR300 Weather Radio

    This emergency radio is more like an emergency system. It receives All NOAA Weather Channels and has the essential S.A.M.E. Technology, which means it will track the local counties so you aren't hearing warnings for areas that don't pertain to you. Midland weather radios have literally saved lives.

  2. Motorola Desktop Weather-Alert Radio

    This model offers 7 NOAA weather channels and S.A.M.E. Technology and also the ability to store Alert messages - up to 20 messages. It also has 3 LED indicators for advisories, watches and warnings.

Portable NOAA Radio Model:

  • Receives AM, FM, shortwave, and 7 pre-set NOAA weather channels with alert.
  • S.A.M.E. Technology
  • Charges from Standard USB
  • Built-in flashlight
  • User Selectable Alert Type - Voice, Display, or Tone
  • Rechargeable Ni-MH battery pack
  • SOS Flashlight Beacon - Activates Morse code for emergency assistance
  • Event Expiration Indicator
  • 5-LED reading lamp
  • Telescoping antenna
  • Smartphone/Tablet Charger - Charge your devices through USB connection
  • Earphone jack
  • Carry strap
  • Multiple Sustainable Power Sources - Solar, hand crank, rechargeable battery
  • Rubberized water-resistant housing
  • Ultrasonic Dog Whistle - May assist search and rescue teams in locating individuals during an emergency situation
  • Public Alert Certified
    • Child Abduction Emergency (Amber Alert)
    • Biological Hazard Warning
    • Nuclear Power Plant Warning
    • Civil Emergency Message
    • Fire Warning
    • Landslide Warning

Here are two portable models for you to consider:

  1. Ambient Weather Emergency Solar Hand Crank AM/FM/NOAA Digital Radio, Flashlight, Cell Phone Charger with NOAA Certified Weather Alert & CablesThis weather radio just about does it all. It has great sound and really does work well with the solar battery. Just in case, though, keep the battery back-up ready in case of a storm. The hand-crank option is also a valuable benefit. The unit really will charge a cell phone, too. This is highly rated at Amazon.com
  2. Midland Pocket Weather Radio. If you want a weather radio that is super portable, this is it. The compact size makes it easy to take along anywhere. It offers a simple, straight-forward weather forecast solution.

Despite the fact that the name says "weather radio", it really provides a lot of other information that extends far beyond weather announcements, all of which can be important to you and your family.

Here are just a few of the things an emergency weather radio can help with:

  1. Forecasts - Current weather of most of the cities in your region will be announced, as well as forecasts for the future. Climatological data such as temperatures and precipitation levels will also be announced.
  2. Warnings - Weather warnings, including but not limited to thunderstorms, severe winds, tornadoes, hurricanes, dangerous snowfall, flooding, and more will all be announced over emergency weather radio.
  3. Special Information Statements - Any significant or unusual meteorological developments will be reported over these radios, including short-term forecast adjustments.
  4. Marine Bulletins - Special announcements of particular interest to boats, residents in coastal areas, and the like are also put out over emergency weather radio.
  5. Department of Homeland Security Bulletins - The Department of Homeland Security retains capability to broadcast on these channels, and even employs a special radio encoding process to do so.
  6. Amber Alerts - Amber Alerts or other missing children or elder reports are also often broadcast via emergency weather radio.

As you can see, an emergency weather radio has many uses above and beyond simple forecasting and storm warnings.

So if you do not already own one, you should seriously consider investing in one; it is one of the most vital tools in a disaster survival kit.