Varying Levels of Weather Support During Hurricane Harvey: Different Needs with Consistent Data (176)

Jennifer McNatt, NWS Southern Region Regional Operations Center, Fort Worth, TX

Derek Giardino, West Gulf River Forecast Center

Michael Brennan, National Hurricane Center

Katie Landry-Guyton, Weather Forecast Office Houston

Greg Heavener, Weather Forecast Office Corpus Christi



Large events, such as hurricanes, require large scale responses from every level of Emergency Management. The National Weather Service (NWS) is frequently asked to provide weather support to State, local, Tribal and Territorial emergency managers, as well as Federal stakeholders. With NWS personnel deployed to all of these locations, it becomes extremely important that weather information remains consistent and well-coordinated, even though the decisions, actions and requests from these partners will vary greatly.

This presentation will focus on the significant communication challenges such an event presents among all of the various levels of support, and also offer some examples of how consistency of message was achieved by NWS forecasters during Hurricane Harvey. All entities want to be consistent with the information they are providing to various levels of Emergency Management, but in an event of this magnitude, demands of the deployments, the workload at offices, and staffing often make this collaboration difficult. Information from partners will also be detailed, and will include how weather information was interpreted, the decisions that were made, and what other weather sources were used to make these decisions.