Sunday, September 9, 2018

National Weather Service: Please Extend Special Rawinsonde Launches

Weather balloons and the instrument packages (upper left) they carry and the data they gather are still vital for weather forecasting. So, given the potential catastrophic nature of wind/flooding due to Hurricane Florence, I am disappointed the NWS is only sending up the special launches as far west as the Mississippi River (below).

Given the vital nature of the upper atmospheric ridge over the Great Plains and Ohio Valley that is expected to stall Florence once it gets inland, we need special soundings at least to the Rockies and, preferably, all the way to the west coast. I would also request special soundings to at least 18Z tomorrow from eastern Canada. We need this data to insure these vital forecasts are as good as they can possibly be.

Yes, yes, I know: overtime, the cost of the balloons, instrument packages, etc., etc. but this is what we pay you for! You can compensate by not sending your meteorologists on overtime to football games, races and outdoor concerts which is something private sector meteorologists should be doing.

Thank you for considering my point of view!!

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