In the eye of the storm: NWS meteorologist presents weather-spotting seminar in Morrison

National Weather Service Meteorologist Jim Lee of the Des Moines office spoke to a crowd of area residents, law enforcement officials and first responders at a Grundy County storm spotting seminar in Morrison last Wednesday night. (Robert Maharry/The Grundy Register photo) 

Jim Lee has been a weather nerd for as long as he can remember, and he loved it so much that he’s worked for the National Weather Service (NWS) since he graduated from college. Lee, a meteorologist based out of Des Moines, spoke to a group of area residents about the keys to storm spotting during a free presentation at the Grundy County Conservation headquarters in Morrison last Wednesday night.

           

“For a lot of meteorologists and weather service employees, there’s one event that’s the big thing. I don’t know that I really have one… (but) a lot of us are passionate about the weather,” he said. “And wherever I go, (whether it’s a) spotter training, the doctor’s office or a dinner party, everybody loves to talk about the weather. It’s our whole lives.”

           

Most of the attendees were involved in either law enforcement or emergency response teams in communities around Grundy County, and Lee stressed that safety is always the biggest concern: spotters should never put themselves in harm’s way in pursuit of a storm.

           

“For the public that want to volunteer to do it, we’re more than happy to train them up, and we appreciate their service,” he said. “But we don’t want them to go out there taking chances on our behalf.” 

 

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