National Weather Service Training Center

NWS Instruction 10-1305: Observational Quality Control

Answers to Review Questions

Question 1

For each one of the quality control items listed below, indicate which level of NWS management (WSHQ, Regions, or WFO) is responsible for accomplishing the required task?

A. Routine data monitoring: WFO

B. Tracking trends and biases in the quality of observations: WSHQ

C. Remedial coordination with data providers: WFO

D. Evaluating the performance of all NWS levels in fulfilling their quality control responsibilities: WSHQ

E. Administering the observer certification program: Regions

F. Conducting station visitations and inspections: WFO

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Question 2

Preventive quality control activities include:

A. Setting observing standards
B. Administering observer certification examinations
C. Providing on-the-job observer training
D. All of the above.

Everything in this list is part of the preventive QC activities that need to be accomplished. In addition, the following items are also considered part of the preventive QC effort: promulgating observing standards; providing formal training or influencing the observer training curriculum developed by others; and conducting station inspection visitations.

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Question 3

Corrective quality control activities include:

A. Real-time site level quality control prior to transmission of an observation
B. Near real-time area level quality control within 1 to 2 hours after an observation is transmitted
C. Post real-time national level oversight
D. All of the above

All of these activities are considered part of the corrective quality control. These activities are described in more detail in other sections of this module.

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Question 4

What organization at NWS Headquarters is responsible for quality control?

A. Science and Operations Core of OM
B. Office of Climate, Water, and Weather Services (OCWWS)
C. Data Quality Branch of OSO
D. Data Acquisition Group in OH

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Question 5

Quality control at the regional level includes:

A. Scheduling cooperative program visits for local offices
B. Reviewing the observation certification program run by each WFO
C. Acting as COTR for NWS contract weather observers
D. Providing maintenance for observing equipment

Option C is the correct response. The Regions are the official contact with the contract observers, although the supervising WFO may have some interaction with the COTR. Options A and D are the responsibility of each WFO, while Option B is an incorrect statement. WFOs proctor the tests for observer certifications, but it is the regions that issue the observer certificates and administer the certification program for their respective region.

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Question 6

At a WFO, an effective quality control program will:

A. Provide on-the-job observer training
B. Station visitations
C. Monitoring and reviewing of data
D. All of the above

All of the tasks listed are the responsibility of each WFO. In addition, WFOs should check observation records.

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Question 7

Contract observers are trained by:

A. The FAA
B. The NWS
D. Private sector training facilities

The company hiring contract observers is responsible for training their personnel in taking weather observations. The NWS may try to influence the curriculum used in this training but does not actually conduct the training.

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Question 8

Contract observers are certified by:

A. The FAA
B. The NWS
D. Private sector training facilities

Even though the NWS does not training weather observers, they do administer the certification program.

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Question 9

Details on how often station visitations should be performed at NWS sponsored stations to review the on-station observing program are found in what NWS Instruction?

A. NWS Instruction 10 - 1303
B. NWS Instruction B-60
C. NWS Instruction 10 -1001
D. NWS Instruction 20 -101

NWS Instruction 10-1303, Inspection Procedure Guideline, provides the details on station visitations. WFOs should conduct inspection visits to all staffed surface observing sites at least once a year, except for SAWRS sites which require a minimum of two inspection visits per year.

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Question 10

Quality control monitoring activities include:

A. Examining hourly observations
B. Garbled transmissions
C. Detecting unrepresentative observations
D. All of the above

All of these activities are correct. In addition, monitoring includes: detecting problems with missing data; missing observations; observer error; automated equipment malfunction; and coordinating corrective actions with the appropriate people.

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Question 11

Quality control reviewing activities include:

A. Checking weather records
B. Responding in a timely and effective manner to quality control reports
C. Determining appropriate corrective actions
D. All of the above

All of the above activities are part of the reviewing process.

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Question 12

Overall national system monitoring and maintenance action coordination for ASOS is the responsibility of:

A. ASOS Operations and Monitoring Center
B. Automated Surface Observing System
C. ASOS Observing Systems Branch
D. FAA Gateway Monitoring Center

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Last updated on 06/26/03