WKYT launches Kentucky's first weather-specific iPad app

Take control of WKYT’s First Alert Defender dual polarity radar and see the weather on your iPad with the new “WKYT Weather” app.

The weather-specific iPad app – a first for a Kentucky television station - is now available in the iTunes app store.

“It’s a whole new way for our viewers to see the weather,” said WKYT chief meteorologist T.G. Shuck. “Through the interactive mapping, you can zoom into your neighborhood and see the weather unfold. It’s also a great place to see the latest forecasts and even watch video versions of WKYT’s weather updates.”

The “WKYT Weather” app includes comprehensive weather information for 10,000 forecast points in the continental United States and 50,000 sites around the globe to provide the most accurate local forecasts.

Other features of the “WKYT Weather” iPad app include weather information for current and saved locations; an interactive display of the WKYT First Alert Defender; national composite radars, satellite images, road weather index and wind speeds displayed over an interactive map; current condition updates; 10-day and hourly forecasts; severe weather warnings, watches, and advisories; hurricane and storm tracking; earthquake locations; and video of updates with WKYT’s team of meteorologists.

Through a partnership with Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives, the 1,000,000-watt First Alert Defender dual polarity radar was built in 2009 and allows WKYT's meteorologists to detect, analyze, depict and warn of more kinds of dangerous weather than any other radar system. The First Alert Defender is not only the most advanced live Doppler radar in Kentucky but also among the most advanced in the world.

“The greatest advantage of dual polarity radar is the fact we’ll be getting twice the data input over old-fashioned Doppler radar,” said WKYT’s Shuck. “This state-of-the-art system benefits viewers year round with any type of weather we experience here in Kentucky. Twice as much information during severe weather can make all the difference in the world during a changing weather situation when every minute, every second counts.”

The benefit of dual polarity radar and its 1,000,000 watts of power set WKYT’s weather forecasting abilities apart.

▪ Track tornadoes as they touch the ground, and follow them, even at night, when eyewitness confirmation is virtually impossible.

▪ In addition to picking up hydrometric features such as water aloft and its movement, the “First Alert Defender” dual polarity Doppler radar can detect storm debris, such as branches, that a tornado may have picked up while on the ground. This gives WKYT’s meteorologists a better indication that the tornado is either on the ground or has been at some point.

▪ Rain, sleet, snow and hail is shown more clearly and accurately. Traditional radar cannot distinguish the difference between these precipitation types.

▪ Get warnings of the leading cause of weather-related deaths in the United States: flooding rain. Compared to the “First Alert Defender” dual polarity radar, traditional radar is virtually blind to this deadly phenomenon because its single radar beam can quickly become diminished as it attempts to pass through the storm.

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