Contact: Vernon Preston, Cary Bristol, and Marilu Trainor
NOAA News Releases 2003
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Residents of eastern Magic Valley, Idaho can now stay on top of severe weather threats with a direct link to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service (NWS) forecasters thanks to a new NOAA weather radio transmitter installed at Cotterel Peak near Burley. The transmitter and is now broadcasting local weather and emergency information from the Pocatello NWS Weather Forecast Office.

Pocatello Office Meteorologist in Charge Jim Meyer said that Cassia County Emergency Services was able to purchase this transmitter with a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utility Service. The State of Idaho Microwave Services donated building and tower space as well as electrical power for the new transmitter. The NWS will pay for maintenance and upkeep of the transmitter and provide the on-air weather information.

“This expansion significantly increases our ability to reach this south central Idaho area directly with vital warnings,” Meyer said. “This new transmitter will help the residents, ranchers and visitors to this area get the most current weather information via NOAA Weather Radio.”

The transmitter is located in a strategic location to provide services to residents of Cassia, Minidoka, southern Blaine and western Power Counties and the heavily traveled Interstate 84 corridor.

Residents in and around the eastern Magic Valley can tune in to162.475 MHz. for the weather broadcasts.

Cary Bristol, Cassia County Emergency Services Coordinator, said, “NOAA Weather Radio has the potential to make a big difference in protecting lives and property not only here in Cassia County, but over a large portion of the Magic Valley,” said “You can't stop Mother Nature, but with more warning, you can prepare.”

NWS Warning Coordination Meteorologist Vernon Preston explained that when you don’t have a regular radio or TV turned on, having a seven-band NOAA All-Hazards Weather Radio with an automatic alarm helps protect your families, individuals and property.

“NOAA Weather Radio allows us to send weather statements and warnings straight from the forecaster to the public in an effort to save lives and property, often saving five to 10 minutes or more,” said Preston.

Bristol added, “Not only does NOAA Weather Radio provide weather information, during natural or man-made disasters, and now we can place safety information directly on the airwaves via this new transmitter and directly alert our public to take protective actions. It will also provide a quick avenue to notify during an AMBER Alert situation.”

The NOAA Weather Radio network has more than 850 transmitters, covering all 50 states, adjacent coastal waters, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and U.S. Pacific Territories.

Weather radios come in many sizes, with a variety of functions and costs. Some receivers automatically sound an alarm and turn themselves on if a severe weather warning is broadcast and can be programmed to warn for weather and civil emergencies in only your county.

Most NOAA Weather Radio receivers are either battery-operated portables or AC-powered desktop models with battery backup. Some scanners, HAM radios, CB radios, short wave receivers and AM/FM radios also are capable of receiving NOAA Weather Radio transmissions. Weather radios can be purchased at many electronics stores. Additional information about the NOAA Weather Radio is available at:

NOAA’s National Weather Service is the primary source of weather data, forecasts and warnings for the United States and its territories and operates the most advanced weather and flood warning and forecast system in the world, helping to protect lives and property and enhance the national economy. To learn more about NWS, please visit

NOAA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources. To learn more about NOAA, please visit

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