NOAA ships and aircraft support Hurricane Irma and Maria forecasts and response
NOAA's Gulfstream IV-SP (N49RF), nicknamed "Gonzo," takes off from Florida's Lakeland Linder Regional Airport, home of the NOAA Aircraft Operations Center.
NOAA Hurricane Hunter crews and scientists flew a number of missions on Hurricane Maria and Irma aboard one of NOAA's Lockheed WP-3D Orions and NOAA's Gulfstream IV-SP, collecting vital data that was used by NOAA researchers, modelers and forecasters. NOAA's Lockheed WP-3D Orion and NOAA's Gulfstream IV-SP logged more than 70 hours each for Hurricane Irma and logged 68 hours and 37 hours, respectively, for Hurricane Maria. NOAA air crews aboard the agency's Beechcraft King Air 350 CER logged more than 45 hours per storm, using sophisticated equipment to take aerial images of damaged communities to help homeowners and emergency managers plan for recovery. NOAA Ship Thomas Jefferson departed Port Everglades, Florida, for Puerto Rico on September 24 to survey for sunken storm debris that could pose a hazard to navigation. The ship traveled to the U.S. Virgin Islands (St. Croix and St. Thomas) on October 1 to continue post-storm surveys. For the latest tropical cyclone forecasts, please visit www.nhc.noaa.gov.