Severe Weather & Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend Coordination Message #1 – Field Day Weekend Weather – Friday 6/21/19-Sunday 6/23/19

Hello to all..

..The following is the first in a series of messages on Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend and providing information on the weather during this period. This is a tradition spanning over 16 years for Amateur Radio Operators involved with Field Day and the NWS Boston/Norton SKYWARN Program..
..2019 Field Day weekend has showers and possibly heavy downpours Friday Morning in Eastern New England but drying out as we go through Friday Afternoon and Evening from west to east with wind gusts in the 25-35 MPH range meaning assuring proper tying down of antennas for Field Day sites. Saturday features largely dry weather but some breezy conditions with temperatures between 75-80 degrees and the chance of a few isolated gusty showers. Thunderstorms aren’t expected at this time but that will be monitored and if more moisture is available, they could occur with a lightning and small hail threat in addition to strong wind gusts. Sunday looks dry and warm with less wind and temperatures in the 80s..
..Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend is an annual event where Ham Operators across the United States setup at Emergency Operations Centers, field locations, home locations etc. to operate and test their equipment and skills and make as many radio contacts as possible during the weekend. Many locations can be visited by the public and Amateur Radio Field Day can be a form of outreach to Ham and non-Ham Operators. It is also noted that several states have given proclamations to Amateur Radio/Ham Radio Operators for either an ‘Amateur Radio Day or Amateur Radio Week’ during the month of June or an ‘Amateur Radio Month’ for this month. It is both a fun/preparatory event for Ham Radio Operators for Emergency Communications scenarios..
..SKYWARN Activation with Ops at NWS Boston/Norton appear unlikely through this timeframe but SKYWARN self-activation will monitor conditions on Friday and Satuday as needed..

There are a large number of Amateur Radio Field Day sites across the NWS Boston/Norton Coverage Area and adjacent NWS Coverage Areas. Here are some links to information on these Amateur Radio Field Day Sites from across the region:

Amateur Radio Field Day Information: http://www.arrl.org/field-day
Amateur Radio Field Day National Locator: http://www.arrl.org/field-day-locator
Eastern Massachusetts Field Day Home Page: https://ema.arrl.org/field-day/
Eastern Massachusetts Field Day Directory: http://ema.arrl.org/field_day/

The commonwealth of Massachusetts has declared this week to be Amateur Radio Week and Governor Baker has proclaimed Saturday June 22nd, 2019 Amateur Radio Day in honor of the ARRL Field Day event. The details can be seen at the following links:
https://ema.arrl.org/2019/06/19/arrl-field-day-is-this-weekend/
https://ema.arrl.org/2019/06/12/triple-play-ma-hams-receive-amateur-radio-proclamations-resolutions-from-house-senate-and-governor/

For Field Day weekend, weather looks fairly optimal throughout with warming conditions as we go through the weekend. On Friday, there will be the chance of showers throughout the day heaviest in the morning with a drying trend from west to east over the course of the day. Conditions should be reasonable for any Field Day sites setting up Friday Afternoon and Evening but wind gusts of 25-35 MPH are possible which means making sure antennas are tied down and staked off properly given some of the wind gusts.

On Saturday, pleasant weather conditions with temperatures from 75-80 degrees are expected though there could be some breezy conditions so assuring antennas and portable setups are mounted properly is essential. There is also the chance of a few isolated gusty rain showers given cold temperatures aloft with warming at the surface. Moisture levels are dry so it shouldn’t be much more than a few isolated showers but this will be monitored as if there is more moisture available, it could allow for a few more showers and even an isolated thunderstorm with an attendant lightning risk and small hail. The chance of more extensive showers or a thunderstorm looks low at this time due to lack of available moisture but will be monitored in future Field Day updates.

On Sunday, warming conditions will occur with temperatures in the 80s in most locations. Conditions will be warm but not humid with dewpoint temperatures in the 50s and light winds.

Coordination messages later Friday and Saturday will help better define the outlook particularly for Saturday concerning any gusty rain showers and any chance for an isolated thunderstorm with lightning and small hail. Below are links to the NWS Boston/Norton Hazardous Weather Outlook and NWS Boston/Norton Experimental Enhanced Hazardous Weather Outlook:

NWS Boston/Norton Hazardous Weather Outlook:
http://kamala.cod.edu/ma/latest.flus41.KBOX.html

NWS Boston/Norton Experimental Enhanced Hazardous Weather Outlook:
https://www.weather.gov/box/ehwo

Amateur Radio Field Day sites are still encouraged to bring a NOAA All-Hazards Weather Radio, monitor various cell phone weather apps where Amateur Operators may have those available and have a dedicated Ham Radio that can monitor their local SKYWARN Frequency for their area as a best safety and preparedness practice. Also sites that have mobile Internet capability can utilize that capability as a way to monitor for weather information. With Mobile Internet capability, utilizing Echolink to monitor the New England Reflector system on Echolink Conference *NEW-ENG3* Node: 9123/IRLP 9123 would be helpful as well. Please see the link below for the latest SKYWARN Frequency information for the region:
http://wx1box.org/southern-new-england-skywarn-frequency-list/

During setup and takedown of Amateur Radio Field Day sites and even while operating, be sure to drink plenty of fluids and eat accordingly. Also having a jacket or sweatshirt during evenings as conditions cool etc. may also be useful while operating this year’s Field Day. The link below features information on Heat Safety:
https://www.weather.gov/safety/heat

Given the threat for thunderstorms particularly on Sunday, lightning is a threat to any and all Amateur Radio Field Day sites. Remember your lightning safety tips and details on lightning safety can be seen at the following link:
https://www.weather.gov/safety/lightning

The next Amateur Radio Field Day coordination message will be posted by 1200 PM Friday Afternoon.

Respectfully Submitted,

Robert Macedo (KD1CY)
ARES SKYWARN Coordinator
Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator
Home Phone #: (508) 994-1875 (After 6 PM)
Home/Data #: (508) 997-4503 (After 6 PM)
Work Phone #: 508-346-2929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://ares.ema.arrl.org
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