Spanish NWS Transmitter in Pharr
The City of Pharr, Texas, the National Weather Service and the Texas Department of Public Safety Emergency Management all worked together with the guidance of Senator Eddie Lucio Jr. to bring the first Spanish language emergency weather notification systems to the Rio Grande Valley in August of 2014.
Through this partnership, the City of Pharr, Texas has taken receipt of a high powered transmitter that continuously transmits all weather data in real time and in Spanish. This information includes forecasts and active weather alerts for the area. This transmitter is responsible for covering McAllen, Edinburg, Mission, San Juan, Alamo, Donna, Weslaco and the unincorporated areas of Hidalgo, and Starr County Texas. (approximately 35 miles east/west of Pharr, Texas). Coverage into Mexico is expected with this system, but actual coverage or use is unknown.
“We are proud to be a regional partner in making sure our Spanish speaking citizens and visitors are alerted to severe weather approaching the area” said Jason Arms, Pharr Innovation & Technology Director. “We are proud to call this another First in Pharr” he added.
The costs of the transmitter and its maintenance are covered by state / federal grant funds, but the citys’ Innovation & Technology department is responsible for ensuring it is operational and not interfering with any other radios systems.
“NOAA Weather Radio remains a vital component of the National Weather Service mission to save lives. In a world where residents can receive hazardous weather notifications from numerous sources, NOAA Weather Radio is still the most reliable source to wake people in the middle of the night when tornadoes, floods, wind, or hail storms are imminent,” said Steve Drillette, Meteorologist-in-Charge with the NWS Brownsville/Rio Grande Valley office. “We are truly grateful for the trusted relationships we have established with our local and state partners, and for their tremendous effort and dedication that made this potentially life-saving project possible.”
Operating Frequency: 162.475 Mhz (Spanish) 162.400 Mhz (English)