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About MidWest SSTRC Inc.

From days of long ago to the present and beyond to the future - there has been and will be a need for the volunteer. The volunteer is only as effective as the support surrounding that person or group of persons.

As the President of MidWest SSTRC, Inc. (Midwest) my personal interest of severe storm involvement traces back to 1967 and continued to 1983 when I committed my company of National Fire & Safety, Ltd. to volunteer people and resources for the purpose of early severe storm warnings. The relaying of accurate and up to the minute information is an integral and essential ingredient to this focus. This is now what is referred to as providing ground truth. MidWest is a noncommercial, non-profit organization of volunteers, whose goal is to help to develop the best possible severe weather warning system in the area. We have come a long way of having to stop and use pay phones, to using the first cellular phones to now having use of our own FM radio frequency and sharing the air waves with the Amateur Radio Networks.

Those reports include, yet are not limited to; the occurrence of tornadoes, funnel clouds, large hail, damaging straight-line winds, flash floods, etc. The reporting is done both in real time and after-the-fact, in providing what is referred to as "ground truth" for severe weather events and weather phenomena. Post event evaluations are also an important function of MidWest.

From 1983 to the present, while working with committed severe storm groups and individuals we have seen a need and direction to become even more committed, to become professional in our efforts and involvement that focus's on Severe Storm Tracking and Response

The concept of the MidWest Severe Storm Tracking/Response Center was born out of this direction. Over two years of discussions and planning had laid the groundwork for this non-profit organization. In essence MidWest has been in existence since 1983.

Our purpose and existence is to the point. A professional and knowing means of assisting in the early warning of severe storms, the proper response and the professional, accurate means of relaying storm information…that those efforts assist in protecting life and property.

Our future goals are many and include the response to severe storms and how we as an organization will be able to lend assistance to those who request. We are pleased to announce that MidWest is a member of the National Association for Search and Rescue as a first step of meeting these goals that we have set.

MidWest continues to offer assistance to local severe storm spotter groups, the National Weather Service and other organizations with field information as we commit numerous personnel and resources to this effort at any given time - in Dane County and surrounding areas. Individual lifestyle schedules continue to be problematic in training schedules with local spotter groups and also for obtaining additional needed volunteers and we welcome all those who have an interest in joining MidWest on any level.

MidWest has committed personnel to attend various conferences and training over the years and will continue to do so as they become available.

What we do is not a sport; nor is it to be taken lightly. Although there are lighter moments in what we do, the situation can and does become a serious matter to be dealt with professionally and expeditiously. Often times vary little happens. But when things start to happen, one must be trained and prepared to serve the community in the best means possible. So if this is something that interests you, come on board, we'd love to have ya. Remember, be safe, be knowledgeable, and be prepared.

Dale L. Bernstein

MidWest SSTRC, Inc.