Baltimore tornado

A reader-shared image of a funnel cloud near Brooklyn. (Mathieu Lafleur for The Baltimore Sun / June 10, 2013)

The National Weather Service's local forecast office is training more people to join its network of severe weather spotters, who help meteorologists observe and predict hazardous weather.

Baltimore County government is hosting meteorologists from the weather service's Baltimore/Washington forecast office in Sterling, Va., on Sept. 16. The meteorologists will teach the weather services introductory "basics" class, which gives an overview about the meteorology behind severe thunderstorms.

The class will be at 7 p.m. in the county's public safety building at 700 E. Joppa Road.

To register, e-mail dwelsh@baltimorecountymd.gov or call 410-887-5996 during normal business hours.

Upon completion of the class, attendees will be assigned spotter numbers and could be called upon to provide observations of possible tornadoes or other severe weather. Spotter reports are often included in weather service storm summaries.