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Ham Radio Resources for Hurricane Arthur

July 3, 2014

As you all are probably aware, Hurricane Arthur is bearing down on the east coast of the United States for this Fourth of July weekend. It is already beginning to bring rain to the coast of North Carolina, and hurricane conditions are possible there by tonight. The storm will then continue northeast up the Mid-Atlantic and New England coasts, with more possible effects as far north as Nova Scotia by Saturday.

If you are interested in listening to radio communications to keep up to date with the latest developments on the storm, there are plenty of opportunities for you. One is the Hurricane Watch Net (HWN), which is conducted on the HF ham bands. Stations in the field of the affected area can check in and report significant weather to the net, which is then relayed directly to the National Hurricane Center. This net is activating today (Thursday) at 12:00 PM for the storm, and will remain up through the night as long as the storm is affecting the coast. It may need to reactivate tomorrow or this weekend if more hurricane conditions are occurring along parts of the New England coast or Nova Scotia.

The net is held primarily on 14.325 MHZ. It will move to 7.268 MHZ at night, as the 20 meter band closes up after dark and 40 meters is more reliable.

You can listen to this net using your HF receiver or radio to hear what is going on in the areas impacted by the storm. Unfortunately, for those without such equipment, I was unable to find a web stream of the net for you to listen to. There used to be one, but I don’t see it online anymore. If anybody knows of one, feel free to share with us.

Find out more about this net here:
http://www.hwn.org

Additionally, the VOIP weather net performs a similar function, relaying reports from field stations directly to the NHC as the storm moves through. This net is held on IRLP and Echo Link, as opposed to the direct, over-the-air HF band. It is planning to activate today (Thursday) at 6 PM, lasting through the duration of the event.

You can listen to this net via the Internet, where it is streamed for your benefit. You can find that, as well as more information, at this page:
http://www.voipwx.net

Both of these nets always activate for hurricanes that affect land in the United States. You can listen to them whenever a net is active to get the latest information, and monitor the web sites for notifications on when activations are expected to occur. They are great ways to eliminate the media as a middle man, and hear directly from trained observers in the affected areas to know what is going on.

The National Hurricane Center also issues advisories on the storm every 3 hours. Read more here:
http://www.nhc.noaa.gov

Happy 4th of July!

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