Who we are and What We Do
WX4NHC Operators at NHC
WX4NHC (formerly W4EHW) is an Amateur Radio Station that is operated by volunteer amateur radio operators and is located at the National Hurricane Center ,
located on the campus of Florida International University in Miami, Florida. The station has been totally assembled from donated equipment.
Since 1980 (see our history) the station has been activated whenever a hurricane is within 300 miles of land fall in the areas of the western Atlantic, the Caribbean or the eastern Pacific.
There is a pool of over 30 volunteer specially trained operators that can be called upon to man the station in 3 hour shifts for as long as is needed. During the 1998 season they operated over 500 hours, the longest time being during hurricane "Georges" when the station was on the air for 10 days and collected over 500 reports. These operators, in conjunction with Net Control operators of the Hurricane Watch Net , collect real time hurricane report forms for the Center's Hurricane Forecasters from amateur radio operators via the radio, Automatic Packet Reporting System (APRS) and from members of the volunteer Observer Network in the affected area via either e-mail of Fax, they also communicate severe weather information to the amateur community.
These "Surface Reports" are real time eye witness reports and weather data that provide the forecasters with supplemental data that may not be available to them through other means.
The operators of WX4NHC (fka W4EHW), in January 1999, were pleased to accept an award for their dedication and contributions from the National Hurricane Center and at the National Hurricane Conference in Orlando, Florida in April 1999 they received an award for their dedication.
Jerry Jarrell, the director of the National Hurricane Center has said: "Despite satellites, hurricane hunter aircraft and radar there are large areas where surface weather reports are not available. Often amateur radio is the only link to remote storm locations."
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