Hurricane Hunters primed for start of the season
BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) -The flight line at Keesler Air Force Base has been fairly quiet, but that’s changing as the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron, aka Hurricane Hunters, are scheduled to fly down into the Gulf of Mexico to investigate a tropical disturbance June 1. That means you might hear the whirl of those C-130 engines during the next few days.
“Right now there’s that little ‘X’ in the Gulf that the Hurricane Center’s forecasting for a 20% chance of development,” said Lt. Col. Mark Withee. “We’re storm ready and ready to go. We deployed some of our aircraft to St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands for any storms that may come across the Atlantic and preparing ourselves for the start of hurricane season here.”
If you remember, during the winter, most of the team was out in California flying atmospheric river missions.
“The atmospheric river missions wrapped up in March, and we brought our equipment back here,” Withee said. “The atmospheric river missions, sometimes we have a little more lead time on those, but that isn’t always the case. Day-prior mission planning can affect those much like in hurricane season when things pop up and you don’t expect it.”
They say despite predictions for a regular season, they’re ready to go for whatever Mother Nature throws at us.
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