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NEW SERVICE SPOTLIGHT: SkyGuard From WeatherData Services

Written by Heidi Schwartz. Posted in Facility Management, New Service Spotlight, Safety, Technology

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Published on November 05, 2009 with No Comments

The SkyGuard service provides proactive weather risk management that enables organizations to improve safety, protect property, and reduce costs associated with interruptions in operations, customer service, and supply chain. Unlike the National Weather Service, which issues warnings covering large areas, SkyGuard from WeatherData Services, Inc., issues warnings only when specific locations are at risk, saving money by keeping facilities running.

An extended lightning warning sent to a client facility is represented by the black box. Warnings are sent to clients based upon their specifications for the area warned, the radius, and the amount of lead time (advance warning) they receive.

An extended lightning warning is sent to a client facility, represented by the black box in the screen.

The company’s experts work with client facilities to determine pre-set thresholds and warning perimeters that will allow the facility enough time to take precautions, such as moving equipment indoors, sheltering employees, and switching to auxiliary power. WeatherData’s meteorologists issue warnings based upon a facility’s specific location, not generic regional warnings.

Customizable warnings based on a facility’s criteria can include: tornado, high wind, lightning, flash flooding, hail, extreme temperature, rain, and hurricane. Warnings are sent using the most effective methods for the client—e-mail, phone, text, and BlackBerry®. There are minimum lead times for warning (e.g., for tornado, 20 minutes; flash flooding, 20 minutes; lightning, 30 minutes).

In addition, WeatherData’s SmartRAD® optional software delivers the best available weather information in real time, from sources such as the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), National Weather Service (NWS), and the National Lightning Detection Network. With an intuitive, graphical interface, facility managers can quickly see the big picture—not just raw data—and access a view that is facility-specific. For further protection and added security, warnings sent via SmartRAD have an acknowledge button that must be hit by facility personnel in order to verify the warning was received.

About Heidi Schwartz

Heidi Schwartz

Schwartz joined Group C Media in April 1989 as managing editor of Today's Facility Manager (TFM) magazine (formerly Business Interiors) where she was subsequently promoted to editor/co-publisher of the monthly trade magazine for facility management professionals. In September 2012, she took over the newly created position of internet director for TFM's parent company, Group C Media, where she is charged with developing content and creating online strategies for TFM and its sister publication, Business Facilities. Schwartz can be reached at

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