NOAA 2000-259
Contact: Barry Reichenbaugh


Oak Ridge Boy and weather buff Richard Sterban used his remarkable bass voice in recording new 30 and 60 second public service announcements for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather radio network, the voice of the National Weather Service.

NOAA Weather Radio is the lone government-operated radio system that provides direct warnings to the public for severe weather and natural and technological hazards, from floods to forest fires, to oil spills. The network of more than 550 local NOAA Weather Radio stations also is the primary trigger for activating America's Emergency Alert System on commercial radio and television stations.

Says the Oaks bass vocalist, "I own a NOAA Radio and have found it very useful whenever severe weather moves into the Nashville area. When vacationing I listen to it every day to determine whether I want to go sailing, go out to the reef, or stay on land and go to the beach."

NOAA Weather Radio continuously broadcasts National Weather Service forecasts, warnings and other crucial weather information. The newest generation of weather radios can be programmed to receive alerts only for the county or parish where the listener resides. Using the Specific Area Message Encoder feature, the NWS broadcast signal preceding an emergency message will cause SAME-equipped radios to sound an alarm to alert users of approaching dangerous weather.

"NOAA Weather Radio can mean the difference between life and death," says retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Jack Kelly, director of the National Weather Service. "When you may only have minutes to react, NOAA Weather Radio gives you confidence to take the appropriate action when severe weather or other hazards are at hand."

Some hazardous events happen when people are asleep or when they aren't listening to the radio or watching TV. Since 1998, three major night-time tornadoes have claimed nearly 100 lives in central Florida, Birmingham, Ala. and Georgia. In each of these episodes, NOAA Weather Radio, with its special alert features, helped to lessen the death toll.

NOAA Weather Radios are available at many retail stores that sell electronic appliances, marine supply stores, truck stops, cable shopping networks, mail-order catalogs and the Internet. The receivers range in cost from $20 to $80, depending on the features and model.

To hear Sterban's public service announcements on the Web, visit: For more information about NOAA Weather Radio online, visit the Web site at:

Editor's note: Radio stations interested in obtaining a compact disc copy of Sterban's public service announcements should contact NOAA at (301) 713-1208 or send an e-mail message with the station's mailing address to: Include the words "Oak Ridge Boys PSA" in the subject line of the request.