Best Emergency Weather Radio for Natural Disasters

Disasters come in all shapes and sizes, and you certainly don’t want to be caught unaware. Having an emergency plan lets you avoid putting you and your family in danger. It enables you to keep safe as you wait for an emergency to resolve or for help to arrive.

Luckily, emergency preparedness doesn’t have to be an elaborate affair that costs you a fair bit of money. It can be as simple as having an emergency kit with a few supplies like the best emergency weather radio, which is one of the most essential. If you still haven’t bought one, we will review some of the top-rated models to help you get one that suits your specific needs.

Best Emergency Weather Radio: Our Top Picks

A severe rainstorm might knock down the power pole, plunging your entire neighborhood into pitch darkness. You need a reliable radio to help you keep abreast of the prevailing weather conditions. That will allow you to plan out what you need to do in the coming hours or if you need to head out and find a safer place.

1. American Red Cross Emergency Weather Radio

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Disaster preparedness is a crucial part of your everyday life, whether you’re having your friend over for a barbecue on a Sunday evening or going on that week-long camping trip. You want to be sure that you don’t suddenly run into inclement weather. The American Red Cross Emergency Weather radio is designed to keep you safe at all times.

Features

With three different sources of power, this rechargeable weather radio will never die on you when you need it the most. It has a hand turbine power generator, a solar panel, and a USB cable port.

Recharging the American Red Cross Emergency Weather Radio is a walk in the park even when using the hand turbine as you only need to crank it for a minute to get up to 20 minutes of radio play. Alternatively, just leave it on a sunny spot and let its built-in solar panel recharge the battery. Or plug in the mini USB cable into a power outlet and you’re on your way to a full charge.

The 1000 mAh internal battery ensures that you’re never out of touch with your loved ones by serving as a power bank. To do so, connect your smart device to the radio via a USB cable, and you can dump charge the phone or tablet. If the battery runs low, simply crank the hand turbine to recharge it and continue powering your smart device.

The American Red Cross Emergency Weather Radio also helps keep your home well illuminated during a power outage or let you catch up on some light reading before drifting to sleep during your camping trip. Additionally, it comes with an AM/FM radio, as well as an NOAA weather band system. You can also listen privately since it has a headphone output.

Pros:

  • Multiple power options
  • Weighs only nine ounces
  • Multipurpose
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Battery included

Cons:

  • Can’t customize alerts
  • The package may arrive without AC adapter

2. Midland WR300 Emergency Weather Radio

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As with most emergency weather radios, the WR300 will scan through seven WX channels before latching on the strongest one to inform you about inclement weather or civil danger warnings. NOAA weather alerts trigger an alarm on emergency radios if there’s a risk of emergencies or severe weather hazard in your region and that’s where the WR300 towers over other models.

Features

The unit comes with a programmable Specific Area Message Encoding (S.A.M.E.) to let you lock on NOAA weather radio from your county. The process is automated, so it requires minimal effort from you. Programming the S.A.M.E. also affords you peace of mind in that it filters out irrelevant warnings.

You also get to customize the kind of weather alerts you wish to receive from 23 counties near you. The alarm on your unit will only go off if any of your chosen locations are threatened. That keeps you from jumping every time a warning goes off on the radio even when it doesn’t pose a danger to you or your loved ones.

With the Midland WR300 Emergency Weather Radio, you also get to customize how you’d like the unit to deliver the relevant weather alerts. You have the choice of a voice alert, a 90dB siren, or a flashing LED. The WR300 also features an event expiry indicator to help you plan your time correctly and ease your anxiety.

Pros:

  • Trendy design
  • Highly customizable
  • Has an alarm clock
  • Easy to use and set up
  • Good sound quality

Con:

  • The display can be too bright for some

3. Midland WR120B/WR120EZ Emergency Weather Radio

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The Midland WR120B/WR120EZ is certified to receive up to seven NOAA channels. It’ll scan all seven before locking on the strongest band with thunderstorm, flood, and civil warnings.

Features

Unlike other emergency weather radios that keep sounding a warning even when the threat is far from you, the WR120B/WR120EZ has programmable S.A.M.E alerts. You no longer be inundated with irrelevant notifications.

You can program the Midland WR120B/WR120EZ Emergency Weather Radio only to serve warnings when specific counties are affected. Specifically, it has more than 60 emergency alerts.

You can also program up to 25 counties into the memory system as well as how the emergency radio serves up the alert. You can opt for flashing color-coded LED, a voice alert, or a 90dB siren. Although this emergency radio is AC powered, it also runs on three AA batteries if you experience a power outage.

Pros:

  • No loud alarms
  • Custom alerts
  • Emergency power backup
  • Multiple warning systems and alerts

Con:

  • No AM/FM stations

Final Verdict

Out of the three best emergency weather radios we reviewed, the Midland WR120B/WR120EZ is what we highly recommend. It comes with a power backup as well as programmable S.A.M.E. alerts as well as how the warnings are served up. It’ll also let you know when the alert expires while serving as your alarm clock.