More weather balloons going up to help forecast Hurricane Ian

Published: Sep. 25, 2022 at 7:20 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 26, 2022 at 6:39 AM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Our local National Weather Service office in Valley in partnership with many other offices around the country will be sending up weather balloons twice as often to aid in forecasting Hurricane Ian.

NWS office Map
NWS office Map(WOWT)

Normally each office will send up weather balloons twice a day to provide current conditions for models to use as they initialize and feed us data 4 times a day. In order to provide more accurate current weather conditions across the country, many offices on this map will be sending up weather balloons 4 times a day up until Ian hits the US mainland some time in the middle of next week. This will provide the best data for models to use each and every time they run.

This is not all that uncommon and will happen many times leading up to hurricane landfalls and in the lead up to large outbreaks of severe weather.

As of 4AM CT Ian is now a Category 1 Hurricane with wind gusts up to 90 mph as it spins south of Cuba. Is forecast to strengthen to a Category 4 storm as it moves into the gulf along the west coast of Florida.

Hurricane Ian
Hurricane Ian(WOWT)

The latest forecast track from the National Hurricane Center keeps Ian out over the Gulf of Mexico longer into Thursday with landfall likely to happen sometime late Thursday or very early Friday along the Florida Gulf Coast as a Category 1 Hurricane. It does appear to weaken some as it makes landfall. All locations along the Florida Gulf Coast will be watching this closely over the next several days.

Ian track
Ian track(WOWT)