Severe Weather & Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend Coordination Message #3 – Saturday 6/27/20-Sunday 6/28/20 Severe Weather Potential

Hello to all..

..The following is the third 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 17 years for Amateur Radio Operators involved with Field Day and the NWS Boston/Norton SKYWARN Program..
..2020 Field Day weekend will mostly be dry but has potential shower and thunderstorm risks in isolated to scattered locations each day including the threat for isolated to scattered strong to severe thunderstorms and becoming hot and humid Saturday and Sunday..
..The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has continued much of Southern New England in a Marginal Risk for Severe Weather. The Slight risk area has been shifted southwest of the NWS Norton coverage area. Doppler Radar at 1115 AM shows an area of rain and possible embedded thunderstorms that poses little severe risk. It will then become warmer and more humid late Saturday Afternoon and evening. Clearing behind this area of rain will determine the risk for any severe weather Saturday. If clearing and heating can develop and the warm front pass far enough north, there would be the potential for strong to severe thunderstorms with strong to damaging winds, hail and torrential rainfall leading to urban and poor drainage flooding as the main threats but a secondary threat for an isolated tornado as well. That said, the risk for today seems a bit lower than yesterday based on model trends and the timing of the current area of rain but still be monitored..
..SPC has also placed all of New England in a marginal risk for severe weather for Sunday in the afternoon and evening timeframe. Strong to damaging winds, hail, and torrential rainfall leading to urban and poor drainage flooding are the main threats. The potential for Sunday is a bit higher given the expectation for strong heating and destabilization but marginal wind shear and the timing of the cold front are key questions..
..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. Due to COVID-19, Amateur Radio Field Day across Southern New England will be quite different with far less Field Day sites than normal in the region and those that are up and running in the field adhering to social distancing guidelines with limited to no public access. There will be many more Amateur Radio Field Day operations operating at home and not at field locations. Amateur Radio Field Day resource information is listed below..
..SKYWARN Self-Activation will monitor conditions throughout Field Day weekend with Amateur Radio Call Up Nets brought up as required..

Here are some links to information on these Amateur Radio Field Day Sites from across the region understanding limited to no public access in 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions and far less field day sites than normal years:

Amateur Radio Field Day Information:
Amateur Radio Field Day National Locator:
Eastern Massachusetts Field Day Home Page:
Eastern Massachusetts Field Day Directory:
ARRL President K5UR-Rick Roderick’s Field Day 2020 Statement:

For Saturday, the headlines depict the potential for severe weather with the potential a bit less than yesterday as the rain area with embedded thunderstorms is expected to move through late this morning to mid-afternoon and questions around clearing for the later afternoon and evening and the position of the warm front in the region. The key factors in that potential are as follows:
1.) Late Morning to mid-afternoon showers and embedded thunderstorms and the amount of clearing that develops later in the afternoon to allow for heating and destabilization. Given the later timing and passage of showers and embedded thunderstorms and questions around cloud cover, this may make the threat more to the southwest of our coverage area but a marginal risk still exists especially along and south of the Mass Pike.
2.) The position of the warm front which is expected to be along the South Coast of New England and should get as far north as the Mass Pike by late Saturday Afternoon/early evening. This will determine if portions of the region can get into the warm sector allowing for severe thunderstorm development presuming sufficient heating and destabilization. This positioning would allow for severe weather potential particularly from the Mass Pike south but all areas should monitor. If it remains along the south coast of New England until later tonight, it would keep the severe weather potential to the southwest of our region. At this time, conditions look more favorable southwest of the NWS Boston/Norton coverage area but a marginal risk has been maintained particularly in areas from the Mass Pike southward.
3.) There will be sufficient wind shear in the atmosphere for severe weather development as well as turning in the atmosphere provided the warm front pushes through at least a portion of Southern New England. This will bear watching for the secondary threat of an isolated tornado in the region.

For Sunday, there will definitely be sufficient heating and destabilization through the day for severe weather potential. Key factors will be position of the cold front and the timing as it sweeps through the area as well as if there will be sufficient wind shear profiles. There could be isolated strong to severe thunderstorms in the early to mid afternoon with a greater threat for severe thunderstorms and somewhat wider coverage possible late Sunday Afternoon and Sunday Evening. Further details will be posted in future coordination messages but a marginal risk for severe weather has been maintained by SPC for Sunday.

SKYWARN Self-Activation will monitor conditions throughout Field Day weekend with Amateur Radio Call Up Nets brought up as required. Below are links to the NWS Boston/Norton Hazardous Weather Outlook, NWS Boston/Norton Enhanced Hazardous Weather Outlook, SPC Day-1 Convective Outlook and SPC Day-2 Convective Outlook for Sunday 6/28/20:

NWS Boston/Norton Hazardous Weather Outlook:

NWS Boston/Norton Experimental Enhanced Hazardous Weather Outlook:

SPC Day-1 Convective Outlook for Saturday 6/27/20:

SPC Day-2 Convective Outlook for Sunday 6/28/20:

Amateur Radio Field Day sites are 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:

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 and rain gear for any showers and thunderstorms etc. may also be useful while operating this year’s Field Day. The link below features information on Heat Safety:

Given the threat for thunderstorms in isolated to scattered locations over the course of Friday and the weekend, 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:

Also, NWS Boston/Norton have put out Public Information Statements for Lightning Safety Awareness Week which occurred from Monday 6/22 through Friday 6/26. The statements with lightning safety tips can be seen here:

The next Amateur Radio Field Day coordination message will be posted by 1100 PM Saturday Evening.

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:
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