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ARRL Special Bulletin ARLX012 (2016)

SB SPCL @ ARL $ARLX012
ARLX012 Tropical Storm Hermine Gains Attention on the Eastern
Seaboard, Hurricane Watch Net Secures

ZCZC AX12
QST de W1AW  
Special Bulletin 12  ARLX012
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  September 2, 2016
To all radio amateurs 

SB SPCL ARL ARLX012
ARLX012 Tropical Storm Hermine Gains Attention on the Eastern
Seaboard, Hurricane Watch Net Secures

Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) and weather-spotting
volunteers remain ready if needed as Tropical storm Hermine
continues to make its way up the US Eastern Seaboard. A category 1
hurricane when it came ashore along Florida's northern Gulf Coast,
Hermine was downgraded to a tropical storm at 0842 UTC. The
Hurricane Watch Net (HWN), which activated to gather ground-level
reports on the storm as it approached landfall, now has secured
after 19 hours of continuous on-air coverage. The net now is at
Alert Level 2 - monitoring mode.

"[M]embers of the Hurricane Watch Net, operating under tough band
conditions on 20 and 40 meters - mainly caused by a geomagnetic
storm - transmitted advisories on Hermine to the affected area and
received numerous weather reports - observed and measured," said HWN
Manager Bobby Graves, KB5HAV. "Those reports were then forwarded to
the National Hurricane Center by way of WX4NHC."

Farther up the coast, the ARRL New York City-Long Island Section has
been alerted to a Tropical Storm Watch. "We are in a monitoring mode
at this time," said ARRL N-LI SEC Jim Mezey, W2KFV. "All Districts
have been asked to check their equipment and their availability."
Connecticut ARES also has gone on a Level 1 alert. "There is a lot
of uncertainty in the forecast as to the impacts this storm is
likely to have on our area, but we should be prepared for whatever
it brings," Connecticut SEC Wayne Gronlund, N1CLV, said. "Please
maintain good situational awareness as this storm moves up the coast
by watching/listening to your preferred weather forecast sources."
Gronlund advised Connecticut ARES members to be ready to assist by
ensuring that radio batteries are charged, vehicles and generators
are fueled.

"Now is the time to make preparations to keep your family safe
should you be asked to deploy," he said. "Remember, you should not
deploy without direction from the appropriate ARES or local
official."

According to FEMA at 12:30 UTC, mandatory evacuations were ordered
in Florida for five Big Bend counties, and voluntary evacuations in
three others. Upward of 300,000 customers were reported without
power, and Amtrak suspended rail service on Thursday in the US
Southeast.

As of 2100 UTC, Hermine was about 30 miles northwest-northwest of
Savannah, Georgia, and 80 miles west-southwest of Charleston, South
Carolina, with maximum sustained winds of 50 MPH.  The storm is
moving northeast at 20 MPH.  The National Weather Service said
dangerous storm surges are possible for portions of the Mid-Atlantic
coast.

Tropical storm warnings and watches remain in effect for parts of
the Eastern Seaboard. The NWS said interests along the US northeast
coast should monitor the progress of the storm, which could generate
significant rainfall and the potential for flooding.

Graves noted that the last major hurricane to strike the US was
Hurricane Wilma in 2005. He thanked daily users of the net's
frequencies -14.325 and 7.268 MHz - for their cooperation in keeping
a clear frequency.

"The Hurricane Watch Net will be prepared for the next hurricane to
threaten land in the Atlantic Basin," he added.
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