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Weather app features ability to track lightning in real time

By Ellen Bacca
Published On: Apr 15 2013 02:20:14 PM CDT
Updated On: Apr 11 2013 06:50:10 PM CDT
EASTERN CAROLINA -

With potentially severe weather on the way, it's a good time to download a new weather app that detects the closest lightning strike at any given time.

The app is called WeatherBug. The free version has a feature called Spark, which will show the user the closest lightning strike to their location, whether it is 10 or 1,000 miles away. The app will also tell the user what direction the lightning is in relation to them, as well as the threat level.

Golfers said the  iPhone app would be very helpful to distinguish rain from thunderstorms.

"It would also help me because I work in the pro shop and we get numerous calls from golfers that are on the golf course, asking us what the situation is as we monitor the weather," said Larry Narolis, an employee at the River Bend Country Club Pro Shop.

Lifeguards said they like the idea of people keeping an eye on the weather. But they said they wouldn't evacuate people out of the water until they can confirm that a storm is rolling in.

"We have to see it and hear it for us to close [a pool].  It can show on the app that they can see lightning in a spot, but it just determines on whether the lifeguard sees it or hears it," said Miranda Carter, a lifeguard at Twin Rivers YMCA.

WeatherBug is available to iPhone users, and will soon be available for Android phones. Once downloaded, a user can access Spark by clicking on the options menu, then selecting "Spark" on the drop-down list.

iPhone users, CLICK HERE for more information.

Android users, CLICK HERE to learn more.