Integrated Impact-based Decision Support Services and Operations for a Common Operating Picture Using Hazard Builder, Trigger Chart and Enhanced Hazardous Weather Outlook (112)

Andy Foster, National Weather Service, Springfield, MO

Jason Schaumann, National Weather Servicde

Eric Wise, National Weather Service

Jerry Wiedenfeld, National Weather Service



The ability of the National Weather Service (NWS) to provide consistent and effective Impact-based Decision Support Services (IDSS) in building a Weather Ready Nation (WRN) requires an integrated holistic approach accounting for the forecast process, operations and services. As part of the NWS Central Region WRN Roadmap an integrated or end-to-end approach was adopted to build a common operating picture to facilitate workforce, forecast and services evolution. Key components include HazardBuilder, Trigger Chart and Enhanced Hazardous Weather Outlook.

HazardBuilder as an integrated component of ForecastBuilder serves as a foundation to an end-to-end IDSS process in support of a Forecaster Decision Support Environment (FDSE). HazardBuilder creates a database of graphical weather hazard risks within the Advanced Weather Interactive Processing System (AWIPS) Graphical Forecast Editor (GFE). This database of graphical hazard risks is derived from weather elements which populate the National Digital Forecast Database (NDFD) and also utilizes output and guidance from national centers. Weather hazard risks generated by the HazardBuilder are then integrated into the forecast process, operational decision-making, and interpretive decision support services.

Internal to the NWS, hazard risks derived from HazardBuilder provide a baseline to the Trigger Chart which supports the FDSE which aid forecasters in determining operational tempo and identifying baseline services. The Trigger Chart guides the forecaster in identifying potential weather hazard impacts and probabilities which yield standard operations levels or tempo that guide NWS staff to baseline operations and services.

External to the NWS, hazard risk levels derived from HazardBuilder feed the Enhanced Hazardous Weather Outlook (EHWO). The EHWO supports preparedness and response efforts prior to and during hazardous weather events by providing graphics which depict risk areas, risk levels, and potential impacts for numerous weather hazards.

This integrated approach accentuates the value of the forecast, supports operations and enhances IDSS for an increasingly diverse customer base.