Solar Flares and Space Weather Disasters

Aurora Borealis dances over the Arctic OceanIn this episode, we look at the potential risks of solar flares or coronal ejections on electrical infrastructure. Our disaster meteorologists Dan and Becky DePodwin join us to talk about space weather prediction and some of the unique challenges posed by this little-known aspect of the national weather infrastructure.

The National Weather Service has this to say about Space Weather:

The sun is the main source of space weather. Eruptions of plasma and magnetic field structures from the sun’s atmosphere, called coronal mass ejections (CMEs), and sudden bursts of radiation, called solar flares, can cause space weather effects at or near Earth. Luckily, Earth’s magnetosphere, ionosphere, and atmosphere do a great job of protecting us from the most hazardous effects.

The first noted occurrence of a coronal ejection affecting earth during the industrial age happened in 1859. The Carrington Event caused issues with telegraph systems around the globe. This was the only widespread electrical infrastructure at the time. Today, with a worldwide society dependent on electricity for nearly all aspects of modern life, a similar event could have catastrophic effects.

This episode is hosted by Jamie Davis and Sam Bradley.

Paragon Brings “The Experience”

Paragon Medical Education Group specializes in bringing what they call “The Experience” to jurisdictions around the country. They bring together police, fire, EMS, and hospital teams to train together and learn what to expect from each diverse group in the response team so that each knows what to expect from the other and how to back the other groups up. Visit Paragon’s site at for more information on how this can be brought into your system.

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