NWS-Central Region Impact-Based Decision Support Services Toolkit in Support of Services and Workforce Evolution (116)

Andy Foster, National Weather Service, Springfield, MO



The National Weather Service Central Region (NWS-CR) embarked on an initiative to deliver effective and consistent Impact-based Decision Support Services (IDSS) and operations as part of the NWS-CR Weather Ready Nation Roadmap in an effort to meet the needs of a Weather Ready Nation. As part of this vision, the NWS-CR Services Evolution - IDSS Team developed and successfully implemented two phases of the IDSS toolkit to support IDSS with core partners at all 38 weather forecast offices in the NWS-CR. The IDSS toolkit consists of a set of common operational tools, procedures and services. NWS-CR forecast staff utilize the toolkit to identify standard operations levels and provide consistent IDSS directly to NWS core partners in support of public safety. The IDSS toolkit includes methods to consistently document and track IDSS opportunities including, within the construct of the NWS Advanced Weather Information Processing System (AWIPS), Hazard Builder, which weather hazard risk levels within the Graphical Forecast Editor, the Trigger Chart for identifying standard operations levels and associated baseline services, such as the Situation Report conference call/webinar protocol and the Enhanced Hazardous Weather Outlook.

The IDSS toolkit provides critical components to a developing Forecaster Decision Support Environment and establishes a baseline for further development of IDSS tools, procedures, and services. This toolkit reaches beyond serving NWS core partners with consistent interpretative services through cultivating an IDSS culture and encouraging a &ldquowhole office&rdquo concept that engages the forecast staff in contributing to IDSS. This toolkit sets the stage for continued development and implementation of IDSS tools that promote an end-to-end forecast-to-interpretative-services process.