With Hurricane Laura set to make landfall late Wednesday or early Thursday, the Hurricane Watch Net (HWN) will activate at 1300 UTC on Wednesday, on its primary frequency of 14.325 MHz, with simultaneous operation starting on 7.268 MHz at 2100 UTC.
“Of course, any change in the forward speed of this storm would change the timing of landfall,” HWN Manager Bobby Graves, KB5HAV, pointed out. “Laura is expected to be a [major] Category 3 Hurricane, well before landfall. After landfall, Laura is expected to remain at hurricane strength as it moves well inland, possibly as far north as Shreveport, Louisiana.”
Once the HWN activates, it will remain in continuous operation on both frequencies until the bands close, resuming operation on those bands as soon as propagation permits. Graves said that once Laura has been downgraded to a Tropical Storm, the net will focus on helping to gather any post-storm reports from affected areas.
“This includes the relaying of any emergency or priority traffic,” Graves noted. Net participants share observed ground-truth data from the affected area. Information that National Hurricane Center forecasters need includes wind speed, wind gust, wind direction, barometric pressure — if available, rainfall, damage, and storm surge. Measured data are preferred, but estimated data are acceptable.