(CNS): The US Air Force Reserve Command’s WC-130J Hurricane Hunter and its crew as well as experts from the National Hurricane Center will be visiting Cayman next week as part of a regional tour ahead of the 2017 hurricane season, which starts in about six weeks. The news comes just after a rare subtropical depression formed in the Eastern Atlantic about 890 miles west-southwest of the Azores Islands. While it presents no threat to land, it serves as a reminder that the weather doesn’t know what day it is and storms can emerge at any time.
The visit is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) and the United States Air Force Reserve’s annual tour of Latin America and the Caribbean, during which they advise on their job in the area during hurricane season.
During the 2016 hurricane season the 53rd WRS flew 75 missions for the National Hurricane Center, including 12 investigative flights over the Atlantic.
“Military air crews fly the WC-130J aircrafts directly into the core of the hurricane to gather data on the system’s structure that is critical for forecasting a storm’s magnitude and path,” Cayman Islands National Weather Service (CINWS) Director-General John Tibbetts explained. “The information collected is then sent in real time via satellite from the aircraft directly to the National Hurricane Center for analysis by weather forecasters.”
HMCI Director McCleary Frederick said, “If you live in an area prone to tropical cyclones, you need to be prepared, and that is what this Caribbean Hurricane Awareness Tour is all about. We want the people of the Cayman Islands to be prepared and know what to expect if disaster ever strikes.”
NOAA hurricane experts, including the Director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Dr Rick Knabb, and senior hurricane specialist Dr Lixion Avila, will be on site to provide information about hurricane preparedness when the aircraft arrives. There will also be a public workshop at noon at the Ritz-Carlton on the latest developments in hurricane forecasting and the future direction of the science.
Listeners can also tune-in to Radio Cayman’s Talk Today show at 12.15pm on the Wednesday to hear from the experts and have their questions answered on air.
All the events are being coordinated by the Cayman Islands National Weather Service (CINWS) and Hazard Management Cayman Islands (HMCI). Tours of the Air Force Reserve Command’s WC-130J Hurricane Hunter will be held on Wednesday, 26 April, at the General Aviation Terminal, next to the Island Air hanger at the Owen Roberts International Airport from 11:00am to 3:00pm.
Category: Local News