SEPTEMBER 23, 2022 – Airmen assigned to the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron deployed to the U.S. Virgin Islands as they collect data on Hurricane Fiona while it remains a threat to land.
The squadron, known as the “Hurricane Hunters,” is the only operational unit in the world flying weather reconnaissance on a routine basis.
Its missions provide atmospheric data that forecasters use to create more accurate models.
The Hurricane Hunters began flying Fiona on Sept. 15, when it was a tropical storm.
It made landfall as a hurricane in Puerto Rico on Sept. 18, knocking out power to the island and causing widespread devastation.
The governor of Puerto Rico activated more than 450 members of the Puerto Rico National Guard to assist with response efforts.
President Joe Biden directed the Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate all disaster relief efforts, according to a White House statement Sept. 18.
The governor of Puerto Rico has activated more than 450 members of the Puerto Rico National Guard to assist, according to Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder, who held a press conference today.
Also, the Virgin Islands National Guard has activated personnel to monitor the situation as part of their joint operations center team, Ryder said.