March 1, 2002
CONTACT: Carol Anderson




YPSILANTI -- EMU's Carl Ojala, professor of geography, is teaching free severe weather 2002 SKYWARN Spotter Training courses. Offered at various times and locations in Washtenaw County, these courses train participants in severe weather identification and reporting procedures. After completing the course, participants are issued identification codes that qualify them to be official spotters in Washtenaw County.

"These people know what they're talking about," said Ojala. He explains that with this credential, spotters can call the National Weather Service or the Washtenaw Emergency Management Service and report any severe weather conditions, such as tornados, hail, lightening, or flash floods. Ojala reports that annually there are an average of 16 tornados in Michigan. June has the most tornados while March and April produce the worst. "We save lives and property," he said.

The courses, dates and locations are:


Wednesday, March 6,

7 - 9:30 p.m., Saline Middle School Auditorium, 7265 Saline-Ann Arbor Rd.


Wednesday, March 20

7 - 9:30 p.m., Mill Creek Middle School Cafeteria, 7305 Dexter-Ann Arbor Road, Dexter


Wednesday, April 3

7 - 9:30 p.m., Chelsea UAW Hall Local 1284, 2795 M-52, South of I-94


Saturday, April 13

9:30 a.m. - noon, EMU, Strong Physical Science Bldg. auditorium


For more information or to register, contact the Emergency Management Division (734.971.1152, M-F, 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.) Email: with name, age, home number and class date.