Wanted: Clay weather observers

The Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network, better known as CoCoRaHS, is looking for volunteer weather observers here in the Volunteer State and in Clay County.

CoCoRaHS, based at Colorado State University and started in 1998, is a unique, nonprofit, community based network of volunteer weather observers of all ages and backgrounds working together to measure and report precipitation amounts (rain, hail and snow).

There are currently three CoCoRaHS observers in Clay County, with room for many more. The group says they would like to have as many as one observer per square mile.

By using low-cost and self-provided measurement tools and stressing training and education and utilizing an interactive website, the aim of CoCoRaHS is to provide the maximum amount of data for natural resource education as well as research applications, because, as we say “every drop counts”.

This is truly a fun, educational community-based project. Everyone can help – young and old and in between. Here are the basic requirements for being a CoCoRaHS weather observer:

(1) Have access to the internet and the ability to browse the CoCoRaHS web site, (which is where you will enter your daily precipitation data) although reports by mail are perfectly welcome,

(2) Have an official-type CoCoRaHS rain gauge (you can buy one inexpensively on the website),

(3) Have a good site on your property with good exposure (as tree-and obstruction-free as possible) where you can place the rain gauge about five feet off the ground, and

(4) Be willing to enter your precipitation data on a daily basis between 6-9AM through the CoCoRaHS internet web site.

What are the benefits of being a CoCoRaHS observer? The organization doesn’t offer a pay check, but by providing your daily precipitation data, you help fill in a piece of the puzzle that affects many people in Clay County and Tennessee in one way or another. The information can be a help to farmers, emergency management personnel or the National Weather Service as they study the long term climate record.

How do you become a CoCoRaHS observer? Just go to www.cocorahs.org and click on the “Join CoCoRaHS” emblem on the upper right side of the main website.