Weatherbug Stations Will Allow National Grid to Improve Storm Monitoring, Support STEM Learning

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Towns in Central Massachusetts Part of Community Weather Monitoring Program

With severe storms on the rise in the Northeast, National Grid must monitor the weather closer than ever before, so the company is installing more than 50 WeatherBug weather stations in partnership with Earth Networks. Massachusetts is home to two of the newest installations: One at the Town of Ware’s fire department and another at the Petersham Center School. Information from the internet-connected stations will help the utility, as well as members of the Ware and Petersham communities, make better weather-related safety decisions by using localized weather information through WeatherBug mobile apps and online.

National Grid has committed to installing nearly 50 WeatherBug stations in both Massachusetts and New York, and seven in Rhode Island. These stations are located at fire departments, schools and other public buildings across each state to enhance STEM education and keep communities safer by providing real-time alerts and forecasts to first responders and others. In the past, Ware, Petersham and many other communities participating in this program have needed to rely on weather reports from urban centers located miles away. The WeatherBug stations provide residents and officials with a source of more localized, accurate weather information.

“National Grid must be closely tuned in to real time weather changes to make sure we are ready when storms hit the Northeast. WeatherBug will help us do that while also enhancing STEM education and making our communities safer,” said Jim Madej, National Grid’s senior vice president and chief customer officer. “With a more robust network of local weather monitoring stations, National Grid will be able to monitor and respond to local weather situations much more accurately, meaning, for example, we should be able to reduce the amount of time it takes to restore power after a storm.”

Earth Networks, the parent company of WeatherBug, operates the nation’s largest weather observing and lightning network. The Maryland-based company has been deploying weather sensors at schools and making weather more hands-on for 20 years. Today, the network includes sensors at thousands of schools, public buildings, parks and other sites throughout the country that provide live weather data 24/7.

“Real-time, local weather provides communities with critical information on approaching weather – including severe thunderstorms, snow and ice and extreme heat – to help first responders, school officials and utilities better prepare and respond to whatever Mother Nature has in store,” says Dennis Stewart, Energy Solutions, Earth Networks – WeatherBug. “We are delighted that National Grid is taking the lead in making hyper-local weather data available throughout the Northeast.”

The Ware Fire Department and Petersham Center School are deploying on-site weather stations that measure conditions including temperature, wind speed and direction, precipitation, humidity and more. The stations also calculate heat index, an essential factor in maintaining public safety. Additionally, WeatherBug’s smartphone apps will now allow local residents to stay safer from lightning. The Spark lightning feature on the WeatherBug mobile app for Android and iPhone reports how far away the nearest lightning is and helps users take action to stay safer.

To view real time weather information from Ware, please visit: http://weather.weatherbug.com/MA/Ware-weather.html
To view real time weather information from Petersham, please visit: http://weather.weatherbug.com/MA/Petersham-weather.html

About National Grid

National Grid (LSE: NG; NYSE:NGG) is an electricity and gas company that connects consumers to energy sources through its networks. The company is at the heart of one of the greatest challenges facing our society - to create new, sustainable energy solutions for the future and develop an energy system that underpins economic prosperity in the 21st century. National Grid holds a vital position at the center of the energy system and it ‘joins everything up’.

In the northeast U.S., we connect more than seven million gas and electric customers to vital energy sources, essential for our modern lifestyles. In Great Britain, we run the gas and electricity systems that our society is built on, delivering gas and electricity across the country.

National Grid delivers electricity to approximately 3.3 million customers in Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island. It is the largest distributor of natural gas in northeastern U.S., serving approximately 3.4 million customers in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

For more information please visit our website: http://www.nationalgridus.com.

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About WeatherBug

Millions rely on WeatherBug’s apps and website for the best forecasts, the fastest alerts and more. Our sensors, deployed at thousands of schools, major sports stadiums, broadcast TV stations and public safety facilities, put the power of the largest commercial-grade weather network at your fingertips.

Our exclusive Spark™ feature is the only tool that puts minute-by-minute, mile-by-mile lightning detection in the palm of your hand on your iPhone, iPad or Android device. WeatherBug is operated by Earth Networks. Learn more at http://www.earthnetworks.com.

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