Where can I get weather information (preferably something similar to what pilots get) for a non-pilot?
I usually use flightradar24 for flight tracking, would love to see weather data as well.
NOAA collects METARs (current weather) from all over the world and publishes them at http://weather.noaa.gov/pub/data/observations/metar/stations/.
They also collect TAFs (forecasts) and publish them at http://weather.noaa.gov/pub/data/forecasts/taf/stations/.
These reports are what the information told to pilots by controllers or broadcast in ATIS is based on, written in shorthand format designed for efficient transmission over teletype. If you look around the directory structure, there are also decoded versions.
The above links are complete, but intended more for machine consumption, being plain text files. You'll find many other sources that look more like normal web pages if you google for some airport code and “METAR” or “TAF”, but different parts of the world will be available at different places. The above links are most comprehensive source.
The Aviation Digital Data Service (ADDS) is an excellent source for aviation weather information within the US. This website is free and completely open to non-pilots (as opposed to 1800wxbrief, for example).
The METAR page gives up to date weather observations for airports throughout the US. The other pages include many other useful weather products, including forecasts, pilot reports, and satellite or radar images.
As a pilot, this is a website that I use frequently, and have used throughout my career. To a non-pilot some of the products may seem incomprehensible, but the website does provide help pages. Perhaps most importantly for a non-pilot, many of the coded textual products are available in a decoded, normal language format.
You can also search in your state, or a specific airport using this site
It pulls up a map and a list of airports and their automated info type, example of the first 3 of 20 entries for MA
Automated Weather Observing System (AWOS)
Automated Surface Observation System (ASOS)
KBED Bedford Middlesex MA ATIS - 124.6 (781) 274-9733 ASOS
KBVY Beverly Essex MA ATIS - 119.2 (978) 921-5042 ASOS
KBOS Boston Suffolk MA ATIS - 127.875 (617) 567-5762 ASOS
I carry the list of numbers for my state in my flight bag so I can call from on the road and see what conditions are like nearby, along with a call to Flight Service (1-800-weather) for the broad picture and NOTAMS, etc.
Since you are asking as a non-pilot, I would highly recommend this particular site that I use for every single flight that I make, it is Sky Vector.
Not only does it provide METARS and TAFs, it provides graphical depictions of:
It also provides graphical depictions of MRMS Weather Radar, IR4 Satellite and Cloud Top Heights. Besides all of the weather services, you can plot a flight plan and overlay enroute hi and low IFR or VFR charts as well as selected sectionals.
I have sent several of my simulator-only pilot friends to this website for fast, accurate and up-to-date weather information and flight planning. FOr non-pilots it has all of the same weather information that we pilots use but in a nice, graphical format that is easy to readn and understand.
Thank you for your interest in this question.
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