(WVNS) – Welcome to West Virginia’s Severe Weather Awareness Week! Your only local Weather Ready Nation Ambassador weather team, StormTracker 59, is participating in a week-long Severe Weather Awareness event hosted by the National Weather Service – Charleston. This is a series encompassing the entire work week dedicated to helping you be prepared for severe weather – something we see every year here in our region! Whether it’s damaging wind gusts, flooding, tornadoes, hail or something else, this week is dedicated to helping prepare you and your family for Mother Nature’s worse!

For Monday, March 20th, our topic covers the difference between a watch and a warning:


  • Usually issued hours in advance.
  • Issued for weather events not currently happening but are expected later on.
  • Covers a large area of concern, not a concentrated spot.
  • Watches are issued to give yourself time to make a plan in case of severe weather.
  • Example: Think of making tacos for dinner. The first step to eating tacos is going to the grocery store and buying the ingredients required to make them. For severe weather, a watch is issued when the atmospheric ingredients are in place for severe weather, but the severe weather has not happened yet.


  • Issued minutes in advance instead of hours.
  • Issued for weather events happening or will be happening shortly.
  • Covers a small area of concern, not a large area.
  • This is the time to utilize your plan – act now!
  • Example: Think of making tacos for dinner. You’ve cooked your taco ingredients and now you are ready to eat them! For severe weather, a warning is issued when the threat for severe weather is imminent.

Regardless of whether a watch or warning is issued, the StormTracker 59 team has you covered! There are multiple ways of staying up to date on the latest watches and warnings for our region:

  • On air on WVNS-TV 59 on CBS at 5 AM, 6 AM, 12 PM, 5 PM, 6 PM and 11 PM Monday through Friday and 6 PM and 11 PM on the weekends.
  • On air on WVNS-TV 59 on Fox at 10 PM Monday through Sunday.
  • Online on our website here, where you can see the latest watches, warnings, forecast discussions, videos, current data and so much more!
  • The StormTracker 59 mobile app, free on the Apple and Google Play.
  • The StormTracker 59 Facebook page and Twitter page.