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NWS Snapshots

May 8, 2006




Electronic Technicians from WFO Duluth MN (William Wallan, left, and Martin Lee) install a tower for the Great Lakes Marine Observation Network at Saxon Harbor, WI on February 21, 2006. Lake Superior is in the background. Seven marine observation platforms were procured through Central Region Headquarters and have been placed around the Great Lakes. Photo by Don Price, WFO Duluth Electronic Systems Analyst.

Survivors of the tornado and their family members look over a display of historical photos and material from the April 3, 1956 tornado outbreak that killed 17 people and injured over 300 in Southwest Lower Michigan. WFO Grand Rapids, MI, and the City of Hudsonville, Michigan recently held a 50th anniversary commemoration of the F5 Hudsonville/Standale tornado of April 3, 1956, which killed 17 people and injured over 300. It was the worst natural disaster in the history of Southwest Lower Michigan. More than 500 people, including many survivors of the tornado, attended the event which was held at Hudsonville High School. Joe Schaefer, Director of the Storm Prediction Center, was among those who gave presentations at the event. Other activities included the premier of the National Weather Service documentary on the tornado event and the dedication of a memorial plaque for the victims of the tornado. For more on this event visit the Central Region web page here. Photo by Service Hydrologist Mark Walton.

Jeffrey Tongue, Science and Operations Officer at WFO Upton, NY, discusses aviation weather with over 70 balloonists attending the Connecticut Lighter than Air Society annual Safety Meeting recently in East Hartford, CT. Tongue discussed various aspects of aviation weather, but focused on winds aloft. Working with Bill Moninger and Stan Benjamin from NOAA's Global Systems Division (GSD) of the Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL), Tongue demonstrated to the balloonists how they could access and interpret vertical profiles (soundings) from the Rapid Update Cycle (RUC) model. The Society was interested in learning more about how to use RUC soundings.

From left, WFO Tulsa MIC Steve Piltz, Southern Region Director Bill Proenza, Benton County EM Director Marshal Watson and Benton County Judge Gary Black pose during 1,000th StormReady community recognition ceremony. A formal recognition ceremony was held at the Northwest Arkansas Community College Rogers in early April. The popular, life-saving StormReady program has grown rapidly since it was launched with seven communities in the Tulsa, OK, area in 1999. The concept was developed by NWS meteorologists Steven Piltz and Lans Rothfusz at WFO Tulsa. The seven original communities were part of the Tulsa WFO County Warning Area -- which also includes Benton County. Read more on the NWS Southern Region website here. Photo by WFO Little Rock.

Tim Marshall, a professional engineer and meteorologist from the Haag Engineering Company, presented his famous damage surveying work in Louisville, KY, at the local USGS Building on April 3, 2006. Marshall, a legendary consultant for damage and structural failure, gave a 3-hour long presentation on assessing strength and source of structural damage to damaging winds, mainly from tornadoes. Several attendees were from regional National Weather Service offices, including Wilmington, OH, Jackson, KY, Charleston, WV, and Nashville, TN. In addition to seven NWS Louisville members attending the presentation, two local media meteorologists also attended the talk. Numerous topics were discussed, including the new EF-scale for determining realistic tornadic wind damage.



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