ARRL Sections - Northern Florida

Northern Florida

Northern Florida

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Northern Florida
Stephen W. Szabo WB4OMM
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November 30 ,2016

Good Day to You! I hope this message finds you enjoying the Greatest Hobby and Service in the World!

The December issue of QST NFL is available at the NFL Section Web Page - 

Effective at midnight tonight, the 2016 Hurricane Season officially concludes.

The 2016 Atlantic hurricane season was the most active and costliest Atlantic hurricane season since 2012 as well as the deadliest since 2005. This was a slightly above average season that produced a total of 15 named storms, seven hurricanes and three major hurricanes.  The season began nearly five months before the official start, with Hurricane Alex forming in the Northeastern Atlantic in mid-January, the first Atlantic January hurricane since Hurricane Alice in 1955.

The strongest, costliest and deadliest storm of the season was Hurricane Matthew, the southernmost Category 5 Atlantic hurricane on record, and the first Category 5 hurricane to form in the Atlantic since Felix in 2007. With up to 1,659 deaths attributed to it, Hurricane Matthew was the deadliest Atlantic hurricane since Stan of 2005. Following the development of Hurricane Nicole, which reached major hurricane status, it was the first time that two Category 4 or stronger hurricanes had formed in the month of October, with the other being Hurricane Matthew. When Nicole became a major hurricane, this season was the first to have more than two major hurricanes since 2011. Unusually late activity occurred in this season as well, with the formation of Hurricane Otto during late November in the southwestern Caribbean Sea, which became the latest Category 2 hurricane in the Atlantic since 1934, as well as becoming the first Atlantic tropical cyclone to survive the crossing to the Eastern Pacific intact since Hurricane Cesar–Douglas in 1996.

Most forecasting groups predicted above average activity due to a developing La Niña and warmer than normal sea surface temperatures. Overall, the forecasts were fairly accurate. Thirteen of the sixteen developed tropical cyclones (except Fiona, Ian and Lisa) have impacted land, and nine of those storms caused loss of life, directly or indirectly. At least 1,765 people have died as of November 27, making this season the deadliest since 2005.

It has been a busy season, and while just missed (minimally impacted) by CAT 1 Hurricane Hermine, we were not so fortunate with CAT 3 Hurricane Matthew.  In Hurricane Matthew's event, we were lucky to escape a catastrophic impact.
As always we should remain vigilant and prepared as a weather induced emergency can happen regardless of an "officially declared season" history has shown us this past year (Alex).

Thanks for all of your preparedness efforts. 

Wowee!  Where has the year gone……….Seems like I was just scheduling my 2016 calendar of various activities, and behold, it’s the last month of the year!  With that said, let’s reflect a bit about some people and events that stand out in 2016.

OARC hosting the ARRL National Convention; hamfests, NPOTA stations all over the state all year long, Field Day, contests, marathons, parades, flooding, tornados, more flooding, two hurricanes….just to recall a few “challenges” we had this past year.  Very busy.  But the events are not as important as the people who volunteer time and effort in support our National Resource of Amateur Radio and give to the others in the community.

Without a doubt, the two hardest working souls in the NFL Section are Webmaster Bert Garcia N8NN and Newsletter Editor Marty Brown WB2VYK.  Never missing a beat, these two work tirelessly in the background, and we have a Web presence and Newsletter to be proud of!  Thank you both for the time and effort you put into your support for the hams in this section (and elsewhere!).

Right behind these great folks, are more great folks – again, working in the background with little fanfare, OO Coordinator Rick Lloyd AA4W and Traffic Managers Don Duckett N9MN and Tom Housworth KIØJO collecting the stats on our OO work and net activity.  The numbers we generate are staggering.  Kudos for keeping us on task!  (And thanks to the many OOs and Traffic folks out there working daily!)

Special recognition to Randy Pierce AG4UU and Brian Kopp KC5LPA, our SARNet system gurus!  They keep this fabulous system up and running, and continue to expand the coverage – for any licensed ham in the state!  More on SARNet is coming, with some “security” changes to keep unlicensed transgressors off the Network!

All of the county ECs/ARES staffs, working with the various served agencies and other radio groups including Skywarn, Red Cross, Salvation Army, and the many government, health care, or other providers – thank you for your support of your community.   Thanks to those ARRL Section Appointees who work quietly in the shadows but always ready to help others…your efforts do not go unnoticed.

This is the time of the year that I always get misty eyed about the past 11 plus months and the approaching new year; like many, I take for granted the wonderful people, wonderful hobby, and wonderful life I have been so blessed to have.  Remember the reason for the season!

I wish you and your loved ones a safe and Happy Holiday Season, and sincere hopes for a great New Year!  Travel safe, take some time to enjoy your families, make some “keepable” New Year’s resolutions (yeah, who am I kidding!!), and do something nice for someone. 

73, Steve WB4OMM
Steve Szabo WB4OMM
NFL Section Manager
ARRL, The National Association for Amateur Radio™

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Northern Florida Officials