The National Weather Service has launched an online survey to capture public input on how they may warn people with boats about different weather hazards in a marine environment. As part of an ongoing “Hazard Simplification Project”, the National Weather Service is considering a major change in how they inform others of weather and water hazards. The proposed new system would retain the “Watch” and “Warning” terms but remove the “Advisory” term. According to the National Weather Service, feedback has been consistent that the term “advisory” is generally misunderstood. In addition to dropping the “advisory” term, “NOWcast” and “Special Weather Statement” messages would be dropped, replaced with single plain-language statements with few exceptions.
One such exception would include changing an alert issued to those involved in marine and boating activity. Rather than issue the currently used “Small Craft Advisory”, the National Weather Service is proposing that it be renamed to a “Small Craft Warning.” Such a change would align the Small Craft Warning product to other marine warnings so that the severity of all marine wind hazards are uniformly denoted by the first term within the headline. This means in order of scale, the National Weather Service could issue a Small Craft Warning, a Gale Warning, a Storm Warning, or a Hurricane Force Wind Warning.
Before they make such a change, the National Weather Service is reaching out to the public to solicit feedback on the change. They have set-up an online survey here to capture opinions: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VZGX6BF For most, the survey should take less than a 90 seconds to complete.