WRAL WeatherCall Frequently Asked Questions
Posted October 8, 2008
Updated March 23, 2010
What is WRAL WeatherCall? <View video>
WRAL WeatherCall is a personalized severe weather warning service from WRAL-TV. When you sign up, you give us the address of your home, business, or child's school. Whenever severe weather threatens that address, you will get a call from Greg Fishel, telling you about the threat and what you need to do about it.
Why should I sign up? <View video>
The meteorologists in the WRAL HD WeatherCenter are always watching the weather, even when you may be asleep or away from your television. That’s why WRAL WeatherCall is so important: whenever severe weather threatens — no matter the hour or whether you’re near a TV or radio — WRAL WeatherCall will alert you to the danger and give you specific safety instructions.
How does it work? <View video>
When you register, you provide us with a physical address for which you would like severe weather alerts. When a severe thunderstorm or tornado warning is issued and includes your specific address, we will telephone up to three telephone numbers you provide, alert you to the threatening weather, and tell you what you need to do.
How much does it cost?
WRAL WeatherCall will cost $8 per year for one address and up to three phone numbers. For example, if you have your home address registered and you want to receive alert phone calls on your home phone and two cell phones, the cost will be $8 per year. (Please note that your usual telephone usage charges will apply.)
If you want to sign up a second address or more than three phone numbers, that will be counted as a second subscription costing an additional $8 per year.
WRAL negotiated the fee with our vendor as low as possible. At 67¢ per month or $8 per year, we believe WRAL WeatherCall’s price is reasonable for address based severe weather telephone warnings. In comparison, The Weather Channel's Notify service is $6.99 per month, more than $80 per year.
What if the storm is on the other side of the county? <View video>
WRAL WeatherCall uses new storm-based warnings to hone in on only the specific area immediately threatened by a dangerous storm. Storm-based warnings are usually issued for a smaller, more specific area, cutting out “false alarm areas” away from storm warnings. This means that you’ll only get a WRAL WeatherCall when a severe thunderstorm or tornado is very near the address you provide.
Can I get my alerts on a cell phone? Voice-over-IP (VOIP) or digital telephone?
You may register any three telephone numbers you wish, including “land lines”, cell phones, and voice-over-IP telephone numbers. Keep in mind that getting your alerts depends on your telephone. In other words, if your cell phone battery is dead or if the Internet connection upon which your voice-over-IP telephone service depends goes out, you will not receive your alerts. This is why you are able to register up to three telephone numbers, and we recommend at least one of those numbers be your primary “land line” telephone, if you have one. (Please note that your usual telephone usage charges will apply.)
What number will my WeatherCall alerts come from?
WRAL WeatherCall alerts will come from 1-866-479-9906. If you have a mobile phone, you might add that number to your address book as "WRAL WeatherCall".
If I register my iPhone (or any other GPS-enabled device), will I get severe weather information anywhere I go?
You will get alerts, but those alerts will be based on the physical address you used when you registered, not the location of your GPS-enabled cell phone.
If you have forgotten your password, you can still access your account. Go the WRAL WeatherCall log-on page and click on the "Forgot Password" link. The system will ask you for the email address you used when you originally signed up. Once you enter your email address, the system will send instructions for accessing your account to that email address.
What happens if I move?
Your WRAL WeatherCall service can move with you, but you have to remember to update your profile with the service. Otherwise, you’ll continue to get alerts for your old address. You can update your address by logging in to your WRAL WeatherCall account.
If you think you are getting too many calls, it's possible you have signed up to receive calls for both tornado and severe thunderstorm warnings. There are far more severe thunderstorm warnings issued for our area than tornado warnings, and that will result in a much larger number of calls. You can log in to your account to check your settings and decide whether you want to include or exclude the severe thunderstorm warning calls.