"What weird weather" seemed to be the words out of everyone's mouth this past summer. The storms brought nervousness, property damage and even excitement.
I spent one of the summer storms huddled in a tent in Poe Valley State Park with my husband and one of my dogs.
When we peered out of the tent window to see how bad it really was, we barely could see through the sheets of rain to the lake. On the lake's dike, the winds ripped and it looked as if Mother Nature was outright ticked off.
I had our small weather radio we usually carry on the boat, and I tried to use it but had no signal.
I now have the Eton FRX3 portable radio and, being the techie I am, I'm very excited about it.
The Eton FRX3 is an AM/FM/weather broadcast crank- or solar-powered radio, with tons of features.
It displays NOAA weather alerts - all you have to do is push a button and the alert is on. When bad weather is rolling, it turns on and you can listen to NOAA alerts. We tested its alert feature out in the last storm, and it works well.
The solar feature is a great use of green energy, but I used the hand crank to charge it and it didn't take long for it to be up and running. It still was charged up with the minimum battery usage days later.
The radio is very easy for anyone to use, even kids.
Its internal batteries are rechargeable Ni-MH type and can be charged for usage using the sun or the hand crank. Standard AAAs also can be installed.
It features a USB port where smartphones and certain other mobile devices can be plugged in and charged, too.
The radio comes with standard controls, a clock and LCD backlight, and an alarm.
An LED flashlight is located on the side, which is super-handy for night-time use or during blackouts.
A glow-in-the-dark indicator helps you easily find the radio in the dark.
The company added a DC input and headphone jack, along with an AUX-input to play music from an external MP3 player.
It's hard to believe that this small, compact radio carries so many needed features. I'm glad I have it for camping, outdoor recreation and any type of emergency.
The product is American Red Cross approved.
It retails for $60 and is available at retailers such as Best Buy, as well as through websites such as Amazon.com.
Reviewed by: Jessica Welshans