WeatherBug® and Send Word Now® Launch Smart Notification Weather Service to Deliver Nation's First Location-Based, Two-Way Mobile Weather Alerts & Notifications Based on Live WeatherBug Network Data
Unlike traditional severe weather alerts, Smart Notification Weather Service offers two-way communication with unprecedented and advanced warning, precision and relevancy
Germantown, MD and New York, NY - June 12, 2006- WeatherBug®, the leading provider of live, local weather information services, and Send Word Now®, a leading emergency notification service provider, today launched the Smart Notification Weather Service.
Smart Notification Weather Service is a system that generates, authorizes and delivers severe weather alerts to subscribers when severe weather, i.e. hurricanes, lightning, floods, wind gusts, tornadoes, is detected within their proximity. Powered by WeatherBug and Send Word Now, the joint service utilizes the live, streaming weather information from the WeatherBug Network of 8,000 WeatherBug Tracking Stations in the U.S, the USPLN lightning network and the National Weather Service to plot the current weather condition on a 5km (3.2 miles) grid map. Traditional alerts are primarily zip-code based, covering areas from approximately five to 30+ miles. Although they provide valuable information, they lack the precision and relevance to meet the needs of modern businesses and public safety organizations, as they typically rely upon airport data that can be up to an hour old.
The Send Word Now Smart Notification Service is the first alert system capable of matching standard or customized weather alerts to each subscriber's specific location and weather profile. The Service then formats the appropriate alert for the supported devices (phone-voice, phone-SMS, email and pager) and relays the alert to each individual. This unprecedented improvement in weather granularity provides subscribers with greater accuracy and relevancy than was previously available with traditional alerting systems. Subscribers at businesses, schools, recreational sites, government agencies, retail companies, transportation firms and more can subsequently safeguard their property and lives -- in advance of a serious threat.
Unlike traditional, one-way, text alerts, the Smart Notification Weather Service supports two-way messages for voice and SMS text email messages, providing the issuer a delivery status and user response. The service also can be extended to serve as a broader notification platform, enabling administrators and other officials to initiate their own alerts.
"We are very pleased to have WeatherBug and Send Word Now Smart Notification Weather Service included in our arsenal of emergency management tools," said Jason Jackson, Wal-Mart's Director of Emergency Management. "We believe these tools are necessary to generate warnings to our 3,800 stores on local weather conditions. A quicker notification time allows maximum time for proper preparations, which minimizes life safety concerns and mitigates impact to our bottom line."
Smart Notification Weather Service:
Advanced Alerting Technology vs. Traditional Services
As severe weather is becoming more frequent across the U.S., only WeatherBug and Send Word Now can offer the data, technology and experience to deliver immediate weather advisories where people work, play and live.
"Traditional weather alerts services lack the accuracy and relevancy to meet the needs of modern businesses and public safety organizations," said WeatherBug President and CEO Bob Marshall. "These traditional services deliver alerts that are often far away, too early, too generic, too frequent or irrelevant to their actual location."
The Smart Notification Weather
Service offers dramatic advancements in alerting by proactively
monitoring and advising subscribers of storm threats, notification of
potential lightning (and. actual strikes noted in traditional
warnings), dangerous wind gusts, extreme heat and humidity (heat index)
and heavy precipitation:
• Precise: Uses the high density weather data from WeatherBug's proprietary network of 8,000 WeatherBug Tracking Stations throughout the U.S.
• Relevant: Cellular location based technology (LBS) is used to match weather conditions with the users exact location.
• Customized: Fully customized weather thresholds defined by users based on organizations' unique preferences. In addition, two-way communications allow organizations to check the status of each recipient and respond proactively.
• Reliable: Uses the same system and provider that supports business critical systems for leading fortune 500 companies.
• User Friendly: Easy to setup accounts, weather profiles and preferences.
• Secure: Secured by a highly redundant backend system
"We are pleased to work with WeatherBug to offer a Smart Notification Weather Service that helps safeguard people and protect business assets by providing real-time, location-based weather notifications," said Send Word Now President and CEO Mitchell Orlowsky. "Our unique ability to proactively alert end-users plus allow them to respond instantaneously is an advancement that ensures more effective communication and coordination during times of potential weather threats."
Lightning Threat Alerts vs. Lightning Strike Warnings
The American Meteorological Society (AMS) notes, "Lightning is the second greatest cause of storm-related deaths in the U.S. (after floods). Lightning kills more people per year on average than hurricanes and tornadoes combined, when corrected for underreporting. There are about 100 lightning fatalities annually in the U.S. Only about 10 percent of lightning strike victims are killed; 90 percent survive. But many of the estimated 1000 survivors suffer severe, life-long injury and disability...The National Weather Service estimates one person in 300 will either be struck by lightning or be affected by a close associate being a lightning victim during their lifetime."
"Too often people wait too long before seeking safe shelter from a thunderstorm and find themselves caught outside in a very dangerous and sometimes deadly situation," said John Jensenius, a lightning safety expert with the NOAA National Weather Service.
safety of Broward county students is our number one priority," said
Jerry Graziose, Broward County School Board Safety Director. "We are
proactively planning and instituting systems and processes to protect
our faculty and students from severe weather threats. The state of
Florida averages 10 deaths and 40 injuries due to lightning in Florida
each year, and half occur during recreational activities, and that is
(weatherbug.com) ensures that individuals, schools, businesses and
government agencies receive the most precise live weather information,
the most relevant weather reports, and the earliest weather warnings to
safeguard property, lives and to plan with confidence. With 8,000
WeatherBug Tracking Stations and over 1,000 cameras primarily based at
neighborhood schools and public safety facilities across the U.S.,
WeatherBug maintains the largest exclusive weather network in the
world. The live, local weather conditions are delivered to millions of
consumers via the Internet and mobile devices, more than 100 state and
local government agencies, including the National Weather Service, and
to broadcast television stations, schools, and businesses. WeatherBug's
data is unique as it is the only live, neighborhood weather available
anywhere. WeatherBug is a brand of AWS Convergence Technologies, Inc. (www.aws.com)
About Send Word Now
Send Word Now is the leading provider of user friendly, secure, on-demand notification and incident management services. Fortune 1000 and government organizations depend on Send Word Now's services to coordinate resources and safeguard people during critical, time sensitive and unexpected events. The easy-to-use, web-based solution ensures smart, effective organization-wide coordination in real time, improving day-to-day business operations and ensuring continuity during crises. Anywhere, anytime, regardless of location or device connection. The company is headquartered in New York City. More information about Send Word Now can be found at http://www.sendwordnow.com
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