Forecasting island weather will be topic of community forum
By IRENE NOLAN
The Island Free Press is sponsoring a community forum on forecasting
the weather on Hatteras and Ocracoke on Tuesday, Jan. 26, from 1 until
3 p.m. at the Community Building in Hatteras village.
Guest speakers will include two meteorologists from the local National
Weather Service office in Newport/Morehead City, N.C.
Meteorologists Brian Cullen and Scott Kennedy will talk about the work
of the local office with a focus on the coastal flood program.
Weather is always foremost on our minds on the islands – for
those of us who live here and for our visitors. The weather affects our
businesses – from commercial fishermen to charter boat captains
to shop owners. And it affects recreational pursuits for visitors who
want to surf, fish, windsurf, kiteboard, or walk the beaches.
On the barrier island, we are vulnerable to the winds from hurricanes,
tropical storms, northeasters – all of which can bring us coastal
During November’s coastal storm, the islands had flooding from
both the Atlantic Ocean and the Pamlico Sound. There were two soundside
flooding events that were surprises.
The National Weather Service staff members will tour flood prone areas
on Hatteras Island during their visit to get more familiar with the
area, and they hope to gain "a local's perspective" on coastal flooding
and other weather-related issues on the islands.
At the community forum, you can talk with Cullen and Kennedy about your
concerns and what you need and want in your forecasts, and you can ask
questions about the local office and its work. You will also
learn where you can ask your questions or contribute information during
In addition, they will also give an overview of the so-called
Nor’Ida storm, and Kennedy will talk about a grant proposal he
has submitted to enhance the interpretation of island weather at the
historic National Weather Bureau Station in Hatteras village, which is
owned by and was restored by the U.S. Park Service and is operated as a
Welcome Center by the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau.
Brian Cullen is a senior forecaster at the NOAA/National Weather
Service office in Newport/Morehead City. He has been with the National
Weather Service since 1990 and served at Weather Forecast Offices in
Taunton, Mass., and Wakefield, Va., before arriving at the Newport
office during the fall of 2007.
Scott Kennedy is a general forecaster in Newport/Morehead City office.
He has been with the National Weather Service since 2003 and served at
the Weather Forecast Office in Monterey, Calif., before he came to the
Newport office during the spring of 2006.
The community forum on forecasting our weather is free and open to the
You can find information on the local office and its forecasts online
If you have specific concerns you want to discuss, you can send
questions ahead of time to [email protected].