Check out some ham radio communications as the Hurricane Watch Net is activated on HF, Echolink, IRLP, and the Internet... -Jeff, W4UFL
With Hurricane Earl now a category 3 storm -- a major hurricane with winds of 125 mph -- WX4NHC and the Hurricane Watch Net (HWN) -- activated at 8 AM EDT on Monday, August 30; WX4NHC is the Amateur Radio station at the National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami, Florida. As of 2 PM (EDT) on Monday, August 30, Earl’s center will pass just north of the British Virgin Islands.
NHC officials are forecasting that Earl will likely head northward, threatening the US Virgin Islands on Monday and moving toward the US Eastern Seaboard sometime after Wednesday, September 1. Dangerous rip currents and swells generated by Earl should begin to impact the Southeast Atlantic Coast -- including Florida’s East Coast -- on Tuesday.
WX4NHC is monitoring the Hurricane Watch Net on 14.325 MHz. Secondary HF frequencies will be 7.268 MHz and 3.950 MHz +/- QRM, should propagation be lost on 20 meters. EchoLink “WX-Talk” Conference Room and IRLP node 9219 is also being monitored. WX4NHC is also monitoring CWOP, APRS and MADIS/MESONET automated weather stations in the affected area, as well as EchoLink “WX-Talk” Conference Room and IRLP node 9219. Surface reports using WX4NHC’s Online Hurricane Report form are also being monitored. The VoIP Hurricane Net will be active for Earl for as long as required to support WX4NHC with surface reports from stations within the affected area, or from amateurs who have contacts within the affected area who can relay information from those contacts. Stations can connect via EchoLink by connecting to the *WX_TALK* EchoLink conference node 7203, as well as via IRLP through IRLP reflector 9219. Several listen-only components for stations have been set up for those who don’t have contact with the affected area, enabling them to monitor the hurricane net. The listen-only information is posted in the VoIP hurricane net activation announcement on the VoIP Hurricane Net Web site.
“We request all land based stations, as well as ships at sea in the areas affected, to send us weather data (measured or estimated) and damage reports,” said WX4NHC Assistant Coordinator Julio Ripoll, WD4R. “If you are in the affected area and normally monitor on a local Net on VHF, 40 or 80 meters, we would appreciate your checking into the HWN NET or EchoLink/IRLP Net once per hour to receive the latest hurricane advisories and to report your local conditions.”