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Azores Amateur Radio Operators Ready for Hurricane Lorenzo

10/01/2019

An Amateur Radio emergency network has activated as Hurricane Lorenzo approaches the Azores — an autonomous region of Portugal in the Atlantic. Amateur Radio volunteers will work with the government and emergency response teams, using VHF and UHF repeaters, HF, and Amateur Radio satellite. A request has been issued for stations to yield to any emergency traffic coming in and out of the Azores (CU, CQ8, CR8, CS8 and CT8 prefixes).

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) in the US reports that a hurricane warning is in effect for Flores, Corvo, Faial, Pico, Sao Jorge, Graciosa, and Terceira islands. Lorenzo, a Category 2 storm, is maintaining its strength as it heads toward the Azores, where it is expected to bring hurricane conditions to some areas early on Wednesday. 

Lorenzo at one point was a Category 5 storm, the first ever recorded as far north and east in the Atlantic.

As of 1800 UTC, Hurricane Lorenzo was some 385 miles southwest of Flores with maximum sustained winds of 100 MPH, moving to the northeast at 25 MPH.

Radio amateurs have established HF inter-island links on 80, 40, and 20 meters — 3,760, 3,770, and 3,750 MHz; 7,110, 7,100, and 7,060 MHz; and 14,300, 14,310, and 14,320.00 MHz. The 20-meter frequencies are designated for communications with stations outside of the Azores.

Over the weekend, AMSAT-NA received a request from radio amateurs involved with emergency communications in the Azores to forgo AO-92 L/v operation of the satellite this week. They asked that AO-92 remain in U/v to handle potential emergency traffic, with passes covering the Azores and Portugal the most critical.

Lorenzo is not predicted to make a direct hit on the Azores. The NHC says that Lorenzo is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 1 to 2 inches over the western Azores and up to 1 inch over the central Azores today and Wednesday. 

“Swells generated by Lorenzo have spread across much of the North Atlantic basin, and are affecting the east coast of the United States, Atlantic Canada, the Bahamas, portions of the Greater and Lesser Antilles, and portions the coast of Europe,” the NHC said. — Thanks to Carlos Nora, CT1END, via Southgate Amateur Radio News, the Hurricane Watch Net, and AMSAT-NA



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