INDOT forecasting instructions

Instructions for updating winter road weather forecast web page

The forecast should be updated daily before approximately 2:00pm.  We will modify the forecast if necessary before midnight based upon 00Z guidance.

  • Log into
  • Open your Google Drive
  • Check the INDOT_2016_17 folder on Google Drive
    (also should be under "Shared with me")
  • Open "INDOT blank map" and/or "local blank map"
    • do not edit this, instead...
  • Make a copy (under File) of each of these docs/drawings, use the current date/cycle in the file name, for example:
    • "Copy of INDOT blank map" becomes "INDOT 2016011512"
    • make sure to click "Share it with the same people" when making a copy
  • Click on the "folder" icon (next to the file name in upper left corner) for these new documents, and locate them in the folder
  • If you need extra maps, such as a snowfall total map, simply copy the blank map and create an appropriate file name "INDOT snowfall 2016011512"
  • Edit the map
    • map: probability is our degree of confidence that some winter weather hazard will be observed in the area, right click on the color-filled objects and do "edit points" to change the shapes
  • Download the drawing/map as a png file
    • Under "File" select "Download as" and then "PNG image"  
    • These will be saved to your local computer's Download directory
  • Edit/update the main "Indiana Winter Road Weather Forecasts" or "Local Winter Road Weather Forecasts" pages
    • change the date/time and forecaster name/email at the top
    • delete the images currently in the web page by clicking on an image, then clicking on the "X" on the right hand side of the pop-up box
    • click the cursor under the main heading for the forecast map, then click "Insert" then "Image", choose the previously saved PNG file, then upload that to the Google site
    • edit your discussion text for your forecast into the web page
    • save your forecast discussion text as a google doc in the INDOT_2016_17 folder
  • Close all Google docs/drawings, save the web pages
    • you're done for today!
    • post to the hangout to notify everyone that the forecast has been updated
    • email the "grounds" list with your updated local road weather forecast

Instructions for INDOT verification
  • Log into
  • Open your Google Drive
  • Find the INDOT_2014-15 folder (click on this link, might also be under "Shared with me")
  • Open the folder for the forecast that was issued two days ago 
  • Create a new document with a file name that includes the forecast issue date/time and "verification writeup"
  • Open and examine/read the forecast map/discussion that was valid yesterday
  • Examine the observations that were valid yesterday, determine where winter weather was observed during the day
    • METAR
    • RWIS
    • radar/satellite
  • Create a verification map to outline regions were winter weather was observed, either using existing maps or by creating your own in Google Docs or NMAP2.  Insert the map(s) into your document
  • Write a brief evaluation of the forecast in your document, starting with a brief summary of the overall accuracy of that forecast