Bill to enhance weather radar coverage in Charlotte moves forward in NC House – WSOC TV

Bill to enhance weather radar coverage in Charlotte moves forward in NC House – WSOC TV

CHARLOTTE – Charlotte may be closer to having its own National Weather Service radar.

Rep. Jeff Jackson's office said Thursday that reauthorizing the weather law, a bill he introduced, has passed the committee.

Currently, Channel 9 has the only local radar in the Charlotte area. The National Weather Service has no radar in Charlotte, and the nearest NWS NEXRAD Doppler radar system is in Greer, South Carolina — more than 80 miles away.

NWS can sometimes be slow to warn of low-altitude thunderstorms and tornadoes because of Charlotte's distance from radar. According to Jackson's office, the Charlotte area is “one of the largest metropolitan areas in the country not covered by nearby weather radar, putting millions of people at risk.”

It's something Jackson has previously spoken about with chief meteorologist Steve Udelson.

“This has been a critical issue for metro Charlotte, dating back to the 1980s, but I've been dealing with it for 25 years,” Udelson said. “We have a hole in the radar network that nuclear weapon states use to keep us all safe. This bill will ensure the Charlotte metro is properly covered so we can have the most accurate data, so we can predict severe storms and tornadoes of this type.”

The goal of reauthorizing the weather law is to close the radar gap. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is currently mapping the next generation of radar systems called NEXRAD. Reauthorization of the Weather Act would call for NOAAA to prioritize existing radar gaps when deciding where to place new systems.

Charlotte will be one of the areas that will be prioritized because it is currently more than 75 miles from the radar station.

“Earlier this year, I introduced a bill that would help ensure that when we upgrade to a new nationwide radar system in the coming years, special attention is paid to areas that are in these blind spots because of their distance from NEXRAD sites, like mine.” “My amendment will help close these gaps and ensure that as many parts of our country as possible have access to accurate, high-quality weather information,” Jackson said in a statement.

(Previous: NC Congressman introduces bill to improve weather radar coverage in Charlotte)

This browser does not support the video component.

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *