HomeNewsArticle Display

Hurricane Hunters fly Tropical Storms Beryl, Chris

Tech. Sgt. Zachary Zieman, 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron loadmaster and dropsonde operator, assists the aircrew with the engine startup prior to takeoff for a mission into Tropical Storm Chris July 8, 2018, to gather weather data for the National Hurricane Center for use in their forecasts. (U.S. Air Force photo/Maj. Marnee A.C. Losurdo)

Tech. Sgt. Zachary Zieman, 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron loadmaster and dropsonde operator, assists the aircrew with the engine startup prior to takeoff for a mission into Tropical Storm Chris July 8, 2018, to gather weather data for the National Hurricane Center for use in their forecasts. (U.S. Air Force photo/Maj. Marnee A.C. Losurdo)

KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. (AFNS) -- The Air Force Reserve’s Hurricane Hunters spent the weekend flying weather reconnaissance missions into Tropical Storm Chris off the North Carolina coastline and Tropical Storm Beryl in the Caribbean Sea to gather data for the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

The 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron began flying missions out of Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, July 7, into then-Tropical Depression Three, which developed into TS Chris Sunday. That same day, three Hurricane Hunter aircraft departed for Curacao where they staged operations and began flying into TS Beryl July 8, which weakened into a tropical wave later that day.

The 53rd WRS, the only Department of Defense organization that flies weather reconnaissance, is expected to continue flying into TS Chris for the rest of the week, sending weather data by satellite communication to the NHC to improve their computer models that forecast movement and intensity, said Col. Robert J. Stanton, 403rd Wing vice commander and navigator who flew into TS Chris.

“We collect data such as pressure, wind speed, wind direction, relative humidity and temperature, as well as other information, and provide it to the NHC to assist them with their forecast and storm warnings and advisories,” said Maj. Ryan Rickert, 53rd WRS aerial reconnaissance weather officer.

Weather forecasters rely on satellites for information; however, oceans can be data sparse environments and satellites can’t provide information such as the interior sea level pressure of a hurricane or wind speed information, which is needed to predict hurricane development and movement, said Rickert.

According to NHC forecasts, TS Chris is expected to develop into a hurricane off the North Carolina coast July 9, and begin moving northeast July 10. The Hurricane Hunters flew one mission into TS Beryl, which weakened into a tropical storm from a hurricane July 7 and degenerated into a tropical wave July 8.

Providing information to the NHC has kept the squadron busy this week, and it’s not unusual for the Hurricane Hunters to fly multiple storms at the same time, said Stanton.

Their area of operation is large, extending from the middle of the Atlantic to just past the Hawaiian Islands, he said. And, through an interagency agreement, tropical weather reconnaissance is governed by the National Hurricane Operations Plan, which requires the squadron to support 24-hour a day continuous operations with the ability to fly up to three storms simultaneously and with a response time of 16 hours. Last year, the 10th busiest hurricane season on record, the squadron flew three hurricanes simultaneously which were Katia, Jose, and Irma.

Forecasters have projected this hurricane season to be an average one; however, whether it’s a busy or slow season, it only takes one storm with devastating impacts to a community to make it a bad one, so it’s important to be prepared, said Lt. Col. Jon Fox, 53rd WRS navigator, who flew into Katrina in 2005 and experienced the aftermath of a devastating storm.

“When in doubt, evacuate. Make sure you stay safe because hindsight is 20/20,” he said, adding the unit collects weather data for forecasts and advisories to assist the public with their hurricane preparedness and evacuation plans to ensure their safety.

Engage

Twitter
RT @PACAF: Here is your #PACAF photo of the week! A B-1B Lancer assigned to the 28th Bomb Wing, Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., takes off…
Twitter
Exercise your right to vote from anywhere in the world. For more information, click the 🔗 https://t.co/RM47o18XhD https://t.co/Li7cgN1kF9
Twitter
Aircrews from the 437th Airlift Wing @TeamCharleston worked alongside @USArmy's 82nd Airborne Division during Batta… https://t.co/GozzCKbwFN
Twitter
RT @AirMobilityCmd: #Airmen from the 436th APS recently loaded an Egyptian air force #130H at #DoverAFB as part of a foreign military sales…
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Success will require collaboration within and throughout our joint partnerships to ensure credibility and lethality of ou…
Twitter
These exercises ensure the 2nd Bomb Wing at Barksdale AFB is able to provide the nation with winning combat power.… https://t.co/Q622IA7vsR
Twitter
RT @HQUSAFEAFAF: #Teamwork + #Partners = Success! U.S. & German Air Force #JTACs teamed up to call in close air support during exercise #a
Twitter
Night flying exercises provide @48FighterWing aircrew & support personnel the experience needed to maintain a ready… https://t.co/5N20mfHOh3
Twitter
RT @USAF_ACC: .@505th_CCW Shadow Operations Center-Nellis participated in the most recent @usairforce Advanced Battle Management System (AB…
Twitter
The @AFResearchLab uses stimuli-responsive polymers for everything from soft robotic grippers to actuators. Called… https://t.co/ZfkMBa65FU
Twitter
RT @AirmanMagazine: Members of the 413th Test Flight at @TeamEglin, FL., tested three weapons for the HH-60W Jolly Green II. The training…
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: I also framed her photo in my office at the pentagon...as a daily reminder of “why” I serve and to “whom” I serve. Ma…
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Liz was a well known and loved member of Team Goodfellow. A photo of her was beautifully framed by my wingman, Chief T…
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Team — this hits close to home with me. A1C Elizabeth Jacobson wasn’t just the first Security Forces Airman to die duri…
Twitter
RT @HQUSAFEAFAF: #AstralKnight 2020 is an Integrated Air & Missile Defense exercise that enhances regional security with our @NATO partners…
Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: Johnson brothers ARTs of maintenance missions (Story by the @403rdWing) #ReserveReady #ReserveResilient #ReadyAF https://…
Twitter
RT @SpaceForceCSO: On this Gold Star Mother’s & Family Day…we remember. We remember those who have fallen in service to our great nation. W…
Twitter
RT @DeptofDefense: To wear the Gold Star button means a military family member has lost a loved one in uniform. On this #GoldStarMothersDay
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: A Gold Star Family is the immediate family member(s) of a fallen service member who died while serving in a time of con…
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,284,353
Follow Us