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National Weather Service Meteorologist Chance Hayes does not want anyone to get a case of IWHTM syndrome this storm season - It Won't Happen to Me.
Hayes said Kansans just need to use common sense.
"Basically all I'm asking folks to do is use their eyes," he said. "If they're out and about and they see storms that don't look quite right, they probably aren't, and it means they're bad and they need to get inside."
Hayes said people should plan ahead for spring and summer storms just like they would for the winter - get their chores done early so they do not have to be on the streets. Once a storm starts, stay inside.
"Unfortunately, with videos going viral on the Internet, everybody has to run out and pick up the hailstones and video them as they do it. I recommend you don't do that," Hayes said. "Wait til it's over, then go out and then pick it up."
A sky with a blueish-green hue usually is an indicator of hail, Hayes said. A long cloud that stretches across the sky is a sign of strong winds. Hayes said chaotic motion in the clouds does not necessarily mean tornados, because those are rare.
The NWS office in Wichita was one of five to test Impact Based Warning systems in 2012. Those warnings are more descriptive of the potential destruction in a storm. The warnings will expand throughout the central region this year.
As for the lingering drought, Hayes does not predict a reprieve.
"In the near term, it does look like it is going to be a little wetter than normal," he said. "We've had the snows. We're going to have some rain, and we're expecting just a little bit more. But when you look at the three month outlook, the latest that I've seen is that it's going to be warmer than normal and dryer than normal."