NEW ORLEANS — The City of New Orleans today unveiled three new WeatherSTEM stations that were installed at the Port of New Orleans this week, joining a network of 20 automated weather stations scattered across the city. These WeatherSTEM sites are localized, live weather monitoring units that will help protect citizens, first responders, stakeholders and assets from dangerous weather conditions.
Other locations include fire stations, police stations and Sewerage and Water Board plant sites.
“As we prepare ourselves for the seventh consecutive above-average hurricane season, we must take every action and every measure necessary to further mitigate any impact on the City of New Orleans,” said Mayor Cantrell. “The best way to do that is to have solid information from platforms, such as WeatherSTEM, that we can rely on to keep our people safe in our city. I am very pleased about how we are moving forward in partnership with several entities, including using NORD recreation centers and in transitioning our special needs registry to our Smart911 platform. These are all examples of how we are using every tool at our disposal to be as prepared as possible during hurricane season.”
Rated for 185 mph winds, these state-of-the-art units provide more accurate forecasting of current and potentially dangerous weather conditions, which will help the New Orleans Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness (NOHSEP) make more informed decisions and alert the public during extreme weather. These stations will also aid in letting first responders know when weather conditions have improved in order to start assisting those in need of emergency services during a potentially life-threatening weather event.
“We are very excited to launch these units and be able to make them readily available to the public,” said NOHSEP Director Collin Arnold. “Not only will they be used during hurricane season to give our Emergency Operations Center real-time situational awareness, but they will create new educational opportunities for the public to better understand weather and climate and to make informed decisions.”
Running from June 1 to November 30 every year, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicts the 2022 hurricane season to be more active than normal, making it the City’s seventh consecutive above-average hurricane season. NOAA estimates 14 to 21 named storms and six to 10 hurricanes, with anywhere between three and six of those classified as “major,” with a 65 percent confidence rate.
“This dense network of weather observations will help the National Weather Service better serve the citizens of New Orleans by being able to see real-time rain amounts, rainfall rates, temperatures, wind speeds and more,” said National Weather Service Meteorologist Lauren Nash. “This can improve our lead time in alerting the citizens of hazardous weather events.”
“The Harbor Police Department is proud to be a part of this new network of weather monitoring devices, as we always stand ready to protect our critical infrastructure and to ensure the safety of our jurisdiction during any weather-related event,” said Harbor Police Department Chief Melanie Montroll. “Real-time weather information at our fingertips will be valuable to continue to deliver on HPD’s mission to ensure the safe and efficient flow of cargo and cruise passengers, and we thank the City for their partnership on this weather station project.”
“WeatherSTEM is very proud that Orleans Parish, home to the beautiful and historic City of New Orleans, has chosen WeatherSTEM’s technology to carefully monitor conditions before, during, and after significant weather events,” said WeatherSTEM Founder & CEO Edward Mansouri.
WeatherSTEM stations provide real-time weather data including temperature, heat index temperature readings, rainfall totals, rain rate intensity, wind speed and wind gust, as well as forecasted information. It will also provide live and archived camera views of approaching weather systems. This data is available to the public and local media outlets at weatherwise.nola.gov.