WCF SECTION PRESS RELEASE #22-28

NWS RUSKIN ACTIVATING WX4TOR FOR SKYWARN RECOGNITION DAY 2022

(Note: This is the corrected version, with the correct link for the Skywarn Recognition Day page that was received after the original bulletin was disseminated. Our apologies to all for any confusion.)

Coming up on Saturday December 3, 2022, will be the 2022 Skywarn Recognition Day.  Skywarn Recognition Day will run from 0000 UTC til 2400 UTC on Saturday December 3, 2022, which works out to be from 1900 EST on Friday December 2, 2000 until 1900 EST on Saturday December 3, 2022.  Skywarn Recognition Day was started in 1999 and has been done annually ever since.  The following is an excerpt from the NWS Skywarn page as to the reason for Skywarn Recognition Day:

Amateur radio operators comprise a large percentage of the Skywarn™ volunteers across the country. The Amateur radio operators also provide vital communication between the NWS and emergency management if normal communications become inoperative.

All Skywarn™ spotters provide critical weather information before, during and after adverse weather strikes. This includes reports of rain and snow, ice and wind, storms and tornadoes, flooding and fire. This is our 24 hours to recognize all of the Skywarn™ spotters serving our nation!

For more information about Skywarn Recognition Day you may go to the Skywarn Recognition Day page at https://www.weather.gov/tbw/srd2022

As part of Skywarn Recognition Day, you can add your ‘dot’ to the Skywarn Recognition Day Spotter Map, that is being hosted on the national Skywarn Recognition Day website. The link to do so is on the Skywarn Recognition Day page, in a bulleted point underneath the ARRL Operating Instructions link. This link will take you to a registration form where the town of your address will then be pinned on the map.  The National Weather Service is requesting that as many Skywarn spotters check in via this method as possible.  This will be open for registrations through December, 3, 2022.

The National Weather Service Office in Ruskin will be activating WX4TOR for Skywarn Recognition Day.  WX4TOR will be monitoring the NI4CE repeater system if you would like a quick check-in during the event.  For information on the NI4CE Repeater System you may go to https://www.ni4ce.org.  WX4TOR will also be trying to contact as many hams as possible on VHF, UHF, HF, and a few on EchoLink.  The hours of operation of WX4TOR will be on Friday, December 2, 2022 from 1900 EST until 2200 EST and on Saturday December 3, 2022 from 0800 EST until 1600 EST.

If you are interested in operating WX4TOR for a time slot, please contact Dan Noah WX4DAN, Warning Coordination Meteorologist, via email at daniel.noah@noaa.gov.

END OF PRESS RELEASE

WCF SECTION PRESS RELEASE #22-27

MIKE DOUGLAS W4MDD ELECTED TO A SECOND TERM AS SECTION MANAGER AND MICKEY BAKER N4MB AS DIVISION DIRECTOR.  JEFF BEALS WA4AW ELECTED AS VICE DIRECTOR.

 

On Friday November 18, 2022 ballots in the election cycle for Section Manager of the ARRL West Central Florida Section and the ARRL Southeastern Division were counted.  The following was the results of that count:

Michael Douglas W4MDD was unopposed for re-election and was declared elected.  Douglas has served as Section Manager of the ARRL West Central Florida Section since January 1, 2021.  Douglas will begin his second term as Section Manager on January 1, 2023.

Jeff Beals WA4AW, won a three way re-election bid to become the new ARRL Southeastern Division Vice Director.  Beals has previously served as the ARRL Southeastern Division Vice Director from 2009-2013, and Section Manager of the ARRL Southern Florida Section for two terms from 2015-2018.  Beals will take office as Vice Director on January 1, 2023.  Beals succeeds Jim Schilling KG4JSZ, of Haines City, in Polk County, who had served as Vice Director since January 1, 2020, who did not seek re-election as Vice Director.

Mickey Baker N4MB won a four way re-election bid for a second term as ARRL Southeastern Division Director.  Baker has served as Division Director since January 1, 2022.  Baker will begin his second term as Division Director on January 1, 2023.

For full details of the ARRL Southeastern Division election you may read the ARRL News article at http://www.arrl.org/news/2022-arrl-board-of-directors-election-results.

END OF PRESS RELEASE

WCF SECTION PRESS RELEASE #22-26

NOMINATIONS FOR ELLEN WHITE W1YL AWARD FOR 2022 ARE OPEN.  ELLEN WHITE W1YL NOW A SILENT KEY.

Nominations for the 2022 Ellen White W1YL Award for are now open.  Nominations for the 2022 Ellen White W1YL Award may be via the Section website Contact and Information Form at http://arrlwcf.org/section-forms/contact-info/.  The Ellen White W1YL Award is given by the ARRL West Central Florida Section each year to honor the amateur radio operator who has made the greatest contribution to amateur radio in the ARRL West Central Florida Section for the current calendar year.  Due to this news release being late this year, nominations for the Ellen White W1YL award will close on Wednesday December 7, 2022.  The recipient of the award will be announced on Friday December 9, 2022 at the Tampa Bay Hamfest and the award will be presented to that recipient during the ARRL forum at the Tampa Bay Hamfest on Saturday December 10, 2022.

The namesake of the award, Ellen White W1YL, recently became a Silent Key on Saturday November 5, 2022.  White was 95 years old at the time of her passing.  White was appointed by Darrell Davis KT4WX in 2016, Section Manager of the ARRL West Central Florida section at time, due to her contributions to amateur radio over many years, which included being in amateur radio for 75 years and working at ARRL HQ for 25 years.  White resided in the Brandon area in Hillsborough County, for the last few years of her life and was still active on CW via an HF remote station.

For details on the Ellen White W1YL Award, you may go to the Section website Ellen White W1YL Award page at http://arrlwcf.org/wcf-special-events/ellen-white-w1yl-award/.  For a detailed article on the life of Ellen White W1YL, please go to the ARRL News article published on November 7, 2022 at http://www.arrl.org/news/ellen-white-w1yl-silent-key-devoted-lifetime-to-amateur-radio-and-arrl.

END OF PRESS RELEASE

WCF SECTION PRESS RELEASE #22-25

SECTION NET CANCELLATIONS FOR THANKSGIVING

In observance of the Thanksgiving Day holiday, the following Section Nets will be cancelled:

The South Florida ARES Net, which includes a roll call of the ARRL Southern Florida Section and ARRL West Central Florida ARRL Section counties, scheduled for 0745 hours, on Thursday November 24, 2022, and on 3940 KHz, will be cancelled.  The South Florida ARES Net will resume its normal operation on Friday November 25, 2022 at 0745 hours.

The ARRL West Central Florida Section Technical Net scheduled for 2100 hours, on Thursday November 24, 2022, and on the NI4CE Repeater System, will be cancelled.  The ARRL West Central Florida Section Technical Net will resume its normal operation on Thursday December 1, 2022 at 2100 hours.

The ARRL West Central Florida Section ARES Net scheduled for 0730 hours on Saturday November 26, 2022 on 3940 KHz will be cancelled.  The ARRL West Central Florida Section ARES Net will resume its normal operation on Saturday December 3, 2022 at 0730 hours.

In the near future, the Section Net cancellation schedule for the upcoming Christmas and New Years holidays will be published via a WCF SECTION PRESS RELEASE.

The ARRL West Central Florida Section wishes everyone a Happy and Safe Thanksgiving Day and weekend.

END OF PRESS RELEASE.

WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN #22-20 – 2100 EST – 11/10/22

TROPICAL STORM NICOLE – 2100 EST – 11/10/22

Hurricane Nicole made its first landfall just south of Vero Beach in Indian River County around 0300 EST this morning, crossing the State of Florida, through the north end of Polk County and Pasco County, exited the west coast in northern Hernando County around 1300 EST, and made a second landfall in Dixie County near 1600 EST this afternoon.  Nicole is expected to continue its northwest track and cross into Georgia late this evening.  Nicole time as a tropical system is expected to come to an end tomorrow as it merges with a trough by the end of the day on Friday.

COASTAL WATCHES/WARNINGS AND FORECAST CONE FOR STORM CENTER

SUMMARY OF 0700 PM EST…0000 UTC…INFORMATION

——————————————————————————————–
LOCATION…30.0N 83.8W
ABOUT 40 MI…65 KM SE OF TALLAHASSEE FLORIDA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS…40 MPH…65 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT…NW OR 315 DEGREES AT 15 MPH…24 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE…990 MB…29.24 INCHES

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* The Flagler/Volusia county line Florida to Altamaha Sound Georgia
* Aripeka to Indian Pass Florida

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for…
* Flagler/Volusia County Line Florida to Altamaha Sound Georgia
* Mouth of the St. Johns River to Georgetown Florida
* Anclote River Florida to Ochlockonee River Florida

FORECAST DISCUSSION:

The following excerpt is from the Forecast Discussion issued at 1600 EST today:

“The center of Nicole briefly emerged over water north of Tampa around 18Z and is now straddling the coast of the Florida Big Bend region northwest of Cedar Key. An earlier scatterometer overpass showed winds of about 40 kt west of the center over the Gulf of Mexico, and this is the main basis for the initial intensity of 40 kt. Surface observations indicate that the central pressure has risen to near 990 mb. In addition to weakening, the 34-kt wind radii associated with the storm have decreased, particularly in the northeastern quadrant. This has resulted in significant changes to the warnings with this advisory.

The initial motion is now 315/13, and this motion is expected to persist through this evening with the center moving into the eastern Florida Panhandle. Subsequently, a low- to mid-level ridge to the northeast of Nicole should move farther eastward as a deep-layer mid-latitude trough and associated surface cold front are approaching from the west. This evolution should cause the storm to turn northward tonight over Georgia, followed by a faster motion toward the north-northeast on Friday. The new forecast track has only minor adjustments from the previous track.

Little change in strength is expected until the center moves farther inland tonight. When that happens, Nicole should weaken to a depression over Georgia. On Friday and Friday night, the system is expected to become post-tropical and be absorbed by the large mid-latitude weather system.”

SITUATION AND ACTIONS:

All tropical storm watches and warnings for the ARRL West Central Florida Section were discontinued earlier this afternoon.  With the discontinuation of tropical storm watches and warning, all ARES groups have just demobilized in the last few hours.

Due to the demobilization of ARES groups of three counties, the ARRL West Central Florida Section ARES Alert Level will be discontinued.

All ARES, ACS, and CERT personnel are encouraged to continue to check each advisory issued by the National Hurricane Center in Miami on Tropical Storm Nicole and the Tropical Weather Outlook issued four times daily by the National Hurricane Center.

LATEST NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER INFORMATION:

Public Advisories: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCPAT2+shtml/072333.shtml?

Forecast Advisory: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCMAT2+shtml/072100.shtml?

Forecast Discussion:  https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCDAT2+shtml/072057.shtml?

Latest GOES Satellite Floater Images and Loop:  https://www.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/GOES/floater.php?stormid=AL172022#navLink

CONCLUSION

This will be the last WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN for Tropical Storm Nicole.

WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN #22-19 – 2100 EST – 11/09/22

HURRICANE NICOLE – 2100 EST – 11/09/22

Tropical Storm Nicole earlier today finally obtained minimum hurricane status, Category 1, around 1800 EST this evening.  Nicole is currently traveling west and should shortly begin its anticipated turn to the northwest.  Landfall is predicted at the present time to be in Martin County around 0100 to 0200 EST tomorrow morning.  After landfall, Nicole is expected to weaken as it travels across the State of Florida and temporarily entering the Gulf of Mexico from Hernando or Citrus Counties around 1300 EST tomorrow before making a second landfall in either Taylor or Jefferson county around 2000 EST tomorrow evening and then traveling north in Georgia by early Friday morning.  At this point restrengthening in the Gulf of Mexico is unanticipated.  Shortly afterward, Nicole should begin its merger with a trough and become absorbed by that trough.

COASTAL WATCHES/WARNINGS AND FORECAST CONE FOR STORM CENTER

SUMMARY OF 0700 PM EST…0000 UTC…INFORMATION

——————————————————————————————–
LOCATION…26.6N 78.5W
ABOUT 20 MI…30 KM ENE OF FREEPORT GRAND BAHAMA ISLAND
ABOUT 100 MI…160 KM E OF WEST PALM BEACH FLORIDA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS…75 MPH…120 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT…W OR 280 DEGREES AT 13 MPH…20 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE…980 MB…28.94 INCHES

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for…
* The Abacos, Berry Islands, and Grand Bahama Island in the northwestern Bahamas
* Boca Raton to Flagler/Volusia County Line Florida

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* Bimini in the northwestern Bahamas
* Hallandale Beach Florida to Boca Raton Florida
* Flagler/Volusia County Line Florida to South Santee River South Carolina
* North of Bonita Beach to Indian Pass Florida
* Lake Okeechobee

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for…
* North Palm Beach Florida to Altamaha Sound Georgia
* Mouth of the St. Johns River to Georgetown Florida
* Anclote River Florida to Ochlockonee River Florida

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for…
* Hallandale Beach to Boca Raton Florida
* Lake Okeechobee

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for…
* Ochlockonee River to Indian Pass Florida
* South of North Palm Beach to Hallandale Beach Florida
* Altamaha Sound Georgia to South Santee River South Carolina

FORECAST DISCUSSION:

The following excerpt is from the Forecast Discussion issued at 1600 EST today:

“The satellite presentation of Nicole has not changed much since late this morning. Curved bands of convection wrap around much of the circulation and there has been a ragged eyewall in radar data from both the Bahamas and Miami. An Air Force Reserve reconnaissance aircraft reported a minimum pressure of 985 mb and peak 850-mb flight-level winds of 72 kt during its final pass through the center and northwestern portion of the storm as Nicole made landfall on Great Abaco Island in the northwestern Bahamas just prior to 1700 UTC. Those aircraft data still supported an intensity of 60 kt, and that remains the initial intensity for this advisory.

Recent center fixes show that Nicole is moving westward or 270 degrees at 11 kt. A mid-level ridge located to the north of the cyclone is expected to shift eastward causing Nicole to turn west-northwestward to northwestward tonight. This motion should bring the center onshore the coast of southeastern or east-central Florida overnight, and across the Florida peninsula Thursday morning. As Nicole passes over north Florida late Thursday, a mid-latitude trough moving into the central United States is expected to turn the cyclone or its remnants northward and then northeastward across inland portions of Georgia and the Carolinas. The dynamical model guidance is in good agreement during the first 12 to 24 hours, with some increase in spread during the recurvature portion of the forecast. The updated NHC track forecast is very similar to the previous advisory through 24 hours, but is slightly west thereafter to be close to the latest consensus aids.

Nicole still has about 12 hours in which to strengthen. Given the slightly improved inner core structure and the warm waters of the Gulf Stream that Nicole will be traversing, the forecast still calls for the cyclone to reach hurricane status before reaching the east coast of Florida. After landfall, weakening should occur as the center cross the Florida peninsula. Even if the center briefly emerges over the extreme northeastern Gulf of Mexico, re-intensification is not expected. Nicole is forecast to weaken further over the southeastern United Sates, and then dissipate along a frontal zone moving into the eastern United States by 60 hours.”

SITUATION AND ACTIONS:

At the present time, Tropical Storm Warnings are in effect for all counties in the ARRL West Central Florida Section.  Polk, Hardee, Highlands, and Desoto Counties.  A Storm Surge Warning has been issued for Coastal Pasco County.

At the present time, Hillsborough County ARES/RACES is staffing a special needs shelter.  Hardee County ARES and Highlands County ARES are staffing shelters in their respective counties.  Other ARES groups are monitoring their situations carefully in case they are requested to activate.  There was no other information on ARES activations available at press time.

Due to activations of three counties, the ARRL West Central Florida Section ARES Alert Level went to a Level 2, which is a partial activation, at 1800 EST, earlier this evening.

All ARES, ACS, and CERT personnel should have brought to completion any preparation activities.  All ARES, ACS, and CERT personnel are encouraged to continue to check each advisory issued by the National Hurricane Center in Miami on Hurricane Nicole and the Tropical Weather Outlook issued four times daily by the National Hurricane Center.

LATEST NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER INFORMATION:

Public Advisories: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCPAT2+shtml/072333.shtml?

Forecast Advisory: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCMAT2+shtml/072100.shtml?

Forecast Discussion:  https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCDAT2+shtml/072057.shtml?

Latest GOES Satellite Floater Images and Loop:  https://www.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/GOES/floater.php?stormid=AL172022#navLink

CONCLUSION

The next WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN will be issued tomorrow following the 1600 EST advisory on Tropical Storm Nicole, unless conditions warrant a sooner bulletin.

WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN #22-18 – 2100 EST – 11/08/22

TROPICAL STORM NICOLE – 2100 EST – 11/08/22

Subtropical Storm Nicole earlier today obtained full tropical characteristics now that it has convection near the center and is now Tropical Storm Nicole.  Nicole is expected to continue westward, then slightly southwestward in response to high pressure to the north, and then with an approaching cold front and trough, will eventually turn to the north and then northeast.  The timing of the high pressure moving out and the arrival of next trough and cold front will determine the final path of Nicole.

COASTAL WATCHES/WARNINGS AND FORECAST CONE FOR STORM CENTER

SUMMARY OF 0700 PM EST…0000 UTC…INFORMATION

——————————————————————————————–
LOCATION…27.3N 74.3W
ABOUT 250 MI…400 KM NE OF THE NORTHWESTERN BAHAMAS
ABOUT 360 MI…575 KM E OF WEST PALM BEACH FLORIDA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS…65 MPH…100 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT…WSW OR 250 DEGREES AT 10 MPH…17 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE…984 MB…29.06 INCHES

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for…
* The Abacos, Berry Islands, Bimini, and Grand Bahama Island in the northwestern Bahamas
* Boca Raton to Flagler/Volusia County Line Florida

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* Andros Island, New Providence, and Eleuthera in the northwestern Bahamas
* Hallandale Beach Florida to Boca Raton Florida
* Flagler/Volusia County Line Florida to Altamaha Sound Georgia
* Lake Okeechobee

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for…
* North Palm Beach Florida to Altamaha Sound Georgia
* Mouth of the St. Johns River to Georgetown Florida

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for…
* Hallandale Beach to Boca Raton Florida
* Lake Okeechobee
* Flagler/Volusia County Line to Ponte Vedra Beach

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for…
* South of North Palm Beach to Hallandale Beach Florida
* Altamaha Sound Georgia to South Santee River South Carolina
* Anclote River Florida to Ochlockonee River Florida

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for…
* South of Hallandale Beach to north of Ocean Reef Florida
* North of Bonita Beach to the Ochlockonee River Florida
* North of Altamaha Sound Georgia to South Santee River South Carolina.

FORECAST DISCUSSION:

The following excerpt is from the Forecast Discussion issued at 1600 EST today:

“Satellite imagery indicates that the central convection associated with Nicole has become better organized this afternoon, with a curved convective band wrapped about three-quarters of the wayaround the center. An earlier scatterometer overpass showed winds
near 45 kt about 60 n mi northwest of the center, and a just received microwave overpass shows an additional increase in organization. Based on these data, the initial intensity is
increased to 55 kt. Water vapor and air mass imagery shows a large area of mid- to upper-level dry air over the southern semicircle of the circulation, and some of this may be entraining into the core at this time.

Nicole is continuing its anticipated turn with the initial motion now 260/9. A strong deep-layer ridge over the eastern United States should steer the storm west-southwestward during the next 24-30 h, with this motion bringing the center near or over the Northwestern Bahamas. After that time, the ridge is forecast to shift eastward allowing Nicole to turn westward to west-northwestward as it approaches the east coast of Florida.
There is some spread in the guidance as to how much of a turn will occur, with the ECMWF and GFS showing a more westward motion, while the HWRF and HMON show a more northwestward motion. This part of the forecast track is along the south edge of the guidance and agreement with the ECMWF and UKMET. After landfall in Florida, Nicole should turn generally northwestward, with the center forecast to pass near or over the west coast of Florida north of Tampa by about 48 h. This should be followed by a turn toward the north and northeast through the eastern United States as the cyclone
recurves on the east side of a large baroclinic trough moving through the central United States. This part of the forecast track is closer to the various consensus models, and overall the new forecast track is a little south of the previous track through 60 h
and a little west of the previous track after that time.

Nicole will be traversing relatively warm SSTs of 27-28 degrees Celsius and upper-level conditions, while not ideal due to a nearby upper-level trough, are expected to allow some strengthening before the cyclone reaches Florida. The new intensity forecast follows the
previous forecast and calls for Nicole to become a hurricane when it is near the northwest Bahamas and remain a hurricane when it reaches Florida. This part of the intensity forecast is at the high end of the intensity guidance. Weakening is expected after Nicole moves inland over Florida and while it accelerates northeastward over the southeastern United States. Extratropical transition is expected to start between 60-72 h and be complete by 96 h, with the storm likely to maintain gale-force winds after transition. The cyclone is expected to dissipate as it merges with another mid-latitude low pressure area by 120 h.”

SITUATION AND ACTIONS:

At the present time, Tropical Storm Warnings are in effect for Polk, Hardee, Highlands, and Desoto Counties.  Tropical Storm Watches are in effect for Pasco, Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee, Sarasota, and Charlotte Counties.

Hillsborough County ARES/RACES has gone to a Level 3 activation as they have been  requested to stand by to provide communications for some shelters.  Hardee County ARES has been requested to provide communications for one shelter and the EOC, starting tomorrow.  Other ARES groups are monitoring their situations carefully in case they are requested to activate.  There was no other information on ARES activations available at press time.

All ARES, ACS, and CERT personnel are encouraged to rush to completion any preparation activities by 1200 EST tomorrow.  All ARES, ACS, and CERT personnel are encouraged to continue to check each advisory issued by the National Hurricane Center in Miami on Subtropical Storm Nicole and the Tropical Weather Outlook issued four times daily by the National Hurricane Center.

LATEST NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER INFORMATION:

Public Advisories: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCPAT2+shtml/072333.shtml?

Forecast Advisory: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCMAT2+shtml/072100.shtml?

Forecast Discussion:  https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCDAT2+shtml/072057.shtml?

Latest GOES Satellite Floater Images and Loop:  https://www.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/GOES/floater.php?stormid=AL172022#navLink

CONCLUSION

The next WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN will be issued tomorrow following the 1600 EST advisory on Tropical Storm Nicole, unless conditions warrant a sooner bulletin.

WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN #22-17 – 2100 EDT – 11/07/22

SUBTROPICAL STORM NICOLE – 2100 EST – 11/07/22

Just when we all in the ARRL West Central Florida Section began to breathe a little easier, and with only 23 days left to go in the 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season, we are now dealing with yet another tropical cyclone.  The area of disturbed weather that was north of Puerto Rico, finally was declared to be Subtropical Storm Nicole at 0500 EST this morning.

Subtropical Storm Nicole is expected to turn westward, then slightly southwestward in response to high pressure to the north, and then with an approaching cold front and trough, will eventually turn to the north and then northeast.  The timing of the high pressure moving out and the arrival of next trough and cold front will determine the final path of Nicole.  With the threat to the State of Florida and the ARRL West Central Florida Section, we are now initiating WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETINS on Nicole.

COASTAL WATCHES/WARNINGS AND FORECAST CONE FOR STORM CENTER

SUMMARY OF 0800 PM EST…0100 UTC…INFORMATION

———————————————-
LOCATION…26.7N 70.8W
ABOUT 425 MI…685 KM ENE OF THE NORTHWESTERN BAHAMAS
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS…45 MPH…75 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT…NW OR 310 DEGREES AT 8 MPH…13 K /H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE…998 MB…29.47 INCHES

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for…
* Northwest Bahamas, including the Abacos, Berry Islands, Bimini, and Grand Bahama Island.

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* Andros Island, New Providence, and Eleuthera.

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for…
* East Coast of Florida from the Volusia/Brevard County Line to Hallandale Beach
* Lake Okeechobee

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for…
* Altamaha Sound to Hallandale Beach
* Mouth of the St. Johns River to East Palatka

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for…
* Altamaha Sound southward to the Volusia/Brevard County Line
* Hallandale Beach to north of Ocean Reef

FORECAST DISCUSSION:

The following excerpt is from the Forecast Discussion issued at 1700 EDT today:

“Nicole’s structure has changed little today. There is some limited convective activity near the center with a large band of showers and thunderstorms extending well north and east over the southwestern Atlantic. An Air Force Reserve reconnaissance aircraft that has been investigating the system this afternoon and has found flight-level and SFMR winds supporting tropical storm strength about 80 n mi northwest of the center, but earlier scatterometer data indicated that the strongest winds are likely occurring in the band well removed from the center. The aircraft reported that the pressure is down to around 1000 mb. The initial intensity is maintained at 40 kt and is based on a blend of the aircraft and earlier satellite wind data.

Nicole is moving northwestward or 310/8 kt. A northwestward motion is expected to continue overnight as the storm moves around the northeastern portion of a decaying upper-level low. On Tuesday, Nicole is forecast to turn westward or west-southwestward as a strong mid-level ridge amplifies over the eastern United States.  This motion should bring the center of Nicole near or over the northwestern Bahamas on Wednesday. After that time, the ridge is forecast to shift eastward, which should allow Nicole to turn west-northwestward or northwestward as it approaches and then moves over the Florida Peninsula. Later in the period, a large mid-latitude trough moving into the central United States is expected to cause Nicole to recurve northeastward. The track guidance is in good agreement during the first few days of the forecast period, and the confidence in this portion of the track forecast is relatively high. The new NHC track foreast is similar to the previous advisory through 72 hours, but shows a track slightly farther inland along the southeast U.S. coast on day 4.  There is increasing along-track spread after 72 hours, with the GFS and UKMET slower than the latest ECMWF. The NHC forecast is near the multi-model consensus aids at those times.

Nicole’s sprawling structure and nearby dry mid-level air suggest that it will take some time for the cyclone to begin strengthening.  Warm ocean temperatures that Nicole will be traversing should allow for a gradual increase in convection near the center, and this combined with low vertical wind shear, is expected to result in gradual moistening of the environment around Nicole. Most of the dynamical models indicate that Nicole will be able to develop a smaller inner core and transition into a tropical cyclone in 24 to 36 hours, and once that occurs, a faster rate of intensification is anticipated. The latest NHC intensity prediction is similar to the previous advisory and calls for the system to be at or near hurricane strength when it passes near or over the northwest Bahamas and reaches the east coast of Florida. The official wind speed forecast is closest to the HFIP corrected consensus, and near the most recent dynamical hurricane models. Regardless of Nicole’s exact intensity, the storm’s large size due to an enhanced pressure gradient north of the storm will likely cause significant wind, storm surge, and rainfall impacts over a large portion of the northwestern Bahamas, Florida, and the southeastern coast of the United States during the next few days.”

SITUATION AND ACTIONS:

At 1613 EST today, the National Hurricane Center in Miami issued Tropical Storm Watches for Polk, Hardee, Highlands, and Desoto Counties in the ARRL West Central Florida Section.  However more watches or warnings will likely be required in the next 12 to 24 hours as Nicole comes closer to the State of Florida.

Hillsborough County ARES/RACES has gone to a Level 3 activation in case they are requested to provide communications for shelters.  Other ARES groups are monitoring their situations carefully in case they are requested to activate.

All ARES, ACS, and CERT personnel are encouraged to rush to completion any preparation activities in the next 24 hours.  All ARES, ACS, and CERT personnel are encouraged to continue to check each advisory issued by the National Hurricane Center in Miami on Subtropical Storm Nicole and the Tropical Weather Outlook issued four times daily by the National Hurricane Center.

LATEST NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER INFORMATION:

Public Advisories: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCPAT2+shtml/072333.shtml?

Forecast Advisory: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCMAT2+shtml/072100.shtml?

Forecast Discussion:  https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCDAT2+shtml/072057.shtml?

Latest GOES Satellite Floater Images and Loop:  https://www.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/GOES/floater.php?stormid=AL172022#navLink

CONCLUSION

The next WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN will be issued tomorrow following the 1700 EST advisory on Subtropical Storm Nicole, unless conditions warrant a sooner bulletin.

WCF SECTION PRESS RELEASE #22-24

SECTION ARES MEETING FOR FALL 2022 GOING VIRTUAL ONLY

Due to several schedule conflicts that could not be avoided, Christine Duez K4KJN, Section Emergency Coordinator, recently announced that the ARRL West Central Florida Section ARES Meeting for the Fall of 2022 would be held virtually as a Zoom meeting on Saturday October 29, 2022 at 1400 EDT.

The ARRL West Cental Florida Section ARES Luncheon scheduled for Saturday October 29, 2022 at 1100 EDT at the Golden Corral on west side of Brandon is cancelled.  The ARRL West Central Florida Section ARES Meeting originally scheduled for Saturday October 29, 2022 at 1300 EDT, to be in-person at the Hillsborough County EOC is also cancelled, and as previously announced, will be held on Zoom as a virtual meeting only at 1400 EDT.

The Zoom meeting information is published on the ARES page on the ARRL West Central Florida Section website at http://arrlwcf.org/wcf-section-programs/ares/.

END OF PRESS RELEASE

 

WCF SECTION SPECIAL BULLETIN #22-16 – 2100 EDT – 9/29/22

HURRICANE IAN – 2100 EDT – 9/29/22

Hurricane Ian, which was a Category 4 at landfall yesterday, crossed the State of Florida and exited the Florida east coast earlier this afternoon as a Tropical Storm.  Ian is now off of the Florida east coast, east of St. Augustine, and has re-intensified to a Category 1 hurricane.  Ian is headed for a second landfall in the United States just north of Charleston, South Carolina, and move inland and travel just east of Rock Hill, SC and Charlotte, NC as a Tropical Storm.

Conditions over the ARRL West Central Florida Section will continue to improve tonight and tomorrow.  Now over two million people in the State of Florida are without electrical power and many have damage to their homes.  So if you are in the dark tonight and or have damage to your home, you are not alone.  Help your friends and neighbors if you are able to do so.

COASTAL WATCHES/WARNINGS AND FORECAST CONE FOR STORM CENTER

SUMMARY OF 0500 PM EDT…2100 UTC…INFORMATION

———————————————-
LOCATION…29.7N 79.4W
ABOUT 215 MI…350 KM S OF CHARLESTON SOUTH CAROLINA
ABOUT 300 MI…485 KM SSW OF CAPE FEAR NORTH CAROLINA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS…75 MPH…120 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT…NNE OR 30 DEGREES AT 10 MPH…17 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE…986 MB…29.12 INCHES

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for…
* Flagler/Volusia Line to Cape Fear
* Neuse River
* St. Johns River

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for…
* Savannah River to Cape Fear

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* Sebastian Inlet to Savannah River
* Cape Fear to Duck North Carolina
* Pamlico Sound

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for…
* North of Cape Fear to Duck North Carolina
* Pamlico River
* Cape Fear River

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for…
* Flagler/Volusia County Line to the Savannah River
* East of Cape Fear to Surf City

FORECAST DISCUSSION:

The following excerpt is from the Forecast Discussion issued at 1700 EDT today:

“Ian remains a hybrid tropical cyclone with characteristics of an extratropical low, including a comma-pattern on satellite images and some frontal features in the outer circulation. The cyclone continues to have a warm core, however, and all indications are that it will re-develop strong convection over the center overnight.  Based on Melbourne Doppler radar velocity data of persistent 70-80-kt winds from 5-10 thousand feet, and earlier sustained winds of about 60 kt near that band from an observation in New Smyrna Beach, the initial wind speed is raised to 65 kt. This makes Ian a hurricane again. An Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft is scheduled to fly through Ian this evening and will provide a
better intensity estimate.

Ian finally appears to be making more of a turn to the north-northeast this afternoon. The hurricane should turn to the north overnight due to the incoming trough diving southward over the southern United States and then north-northwestward on Saturday with an increase in forward speed. While the overall synoptic pattern is similar in all of the models, Ian has been uncooperative and remains right of the previous track. Thus, the new forecast is adjusted to the east, and lies east of the model consensus.  Assuming Ian re-develops thunderstorms near the core overnight, it should take the expected north-northwest turn, but this shouldn’t be considered a confident forecast yet. Because of the
uncertainty, the Hurricane Warning has been extended eastward into North Carolina to Cape Fear.

The hurricane is moving over the Gulf Stream for the next day or so, where it has some time for further re-intensification.  Additionally, the trough interaction should provide a baroclinic energy kick. These factors point to some strengthening before landfall tomorrow. The new forecast is close to the GFS and regional hurricane models and is a bit stronger than before. It should be emphasized that while we don’t expect Ian to be a classic
hurricane at landfall, this does not diminish the danger it poses.  Strong winds and storm surge will also extend far from the center and will begin well before the center arrives.”

SITUATION AND ACTIONS:

As of 1700 EDT today, all of the Tropical Storm and Hurricane Watches and Warnings were discontinued earlier today.  The only watches or warnings still in effect are:

  • Rip Current Statement:  Coastal Pasco, Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee, Sarasota, and Charlotte Counties
  • Flood Warnings:  Peace River in Polk, Hardee, Desota, and Charlotte Counties.

The ARRL West Central Florida Section ARES remains at a Level 1 alert until more ARES groups.  Pasco County ARES and Manatee County ARES demobilized earlier today.  As far as we know, all other ARES groups are still partially or fully mobilized.

Note:  The Section ARES Alert Level simply reflects the activation status of local ARES groups in the ARRL West Central Florida Section.  Each ARES groups activates at the request of their served agencies and or in accordance with their local ARES plan.

Section ARES Alert Levels:
Level 3:   One or more ARES groups on Standby for possible activation in one or more WCF Counties.
Level 2:  One or more WCF Section ARES Groups are activated.
Level 1:  All WCF Section ARES Groups are activated.

All ARES, ACS, and CERT personnel are encouraged to continue to check each advisory issued by the National Hurricane Center in Miami and the Tropical Weather Outlook issued four times daily by the National Hurricane Center.

Arc Thames W4CPD, Section Emergency Coordinator – Northern Florida Section, has been designated as the liaison between Florida Tri-Section ARES and the Florida Division of Emergency Management.  The following webpage has information on a couple of upcoming opportunities to volunteer and qualifications to volunteer:  http://arrlwcf.org/wcf-section-programs/ares/hurricane-ian-service-requests/.  Any volunteer assignment that become available will be in the recovery phase.  Please, DO NOT SELF ACTIVATE.  Any such volunteers will be contacted and authorized if they are to proceed.

The Florida Tri-Section ARES Net will continue to operate for the duration on approximately the following schedule:

  • 0800-2000 EDT 7.247 MHz or 7.247 MHz
  • 2000-0800 EDT 3.940 MHz or 3.950 MHz

The Hurricane Watch Net is continuing operations for Hurricane Ian on 14.325 MHz and on 7.268 MHz.  The following net schedule was obtained from the Hurricane Watch Net website that goes into full effect for the duration of Hurricane Ian.

  • Resume operations Tuesday morning on 14.325.00 MHz at 8:00 AM EDT (1200 UTC). Remain active until we lose propagation.
  • Activate our 40-meter Net on 7.268.00 MHz at 7:00 PM EDT (2300 UTC). Remain active until midnight eastern.

LATEST NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER INFORMATION:

Public Advisories: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCMAT4+shtml/232103.shtml?

Forecast Advisory: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCMAT4+shtml/232103.shtml?

Forecast Discussion:  https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCDAT4+shtml/232054.shtml?

Latest GOES Satellite Floater Images and Loop:  https://www.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/GOES/floater.php?stormid=AL092022#navLink

CONCLUSION

This will be the last special bulletin for Hurricane Ian, unless it somehow threatens the ARRL West Central Florida Section, which is very unlikely.

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