The Commanding Officer of Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, Col. Alphonso Trimble, and members of his staff visited the National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office in Tallahassee, Fla., on June 13, 2019.
Members of the NWS provide the C.O. a hurricane season brief annually; however, the brief is provided at the WFO every three years.
“It is important for the commanding officer to see where the (hurricane brief) information comes from, meet the faces of those providing the information and understand the capabilities of the WFO that supports his installation,” said Steven Dancer, installation emergency manager.
As Hurricane Michael demonstrated in October 2018, the impacts of hurricanes are not exclusive to coastal communities. These impacts can impact Marines, Sailors and civilian employees who are on leave, or other Department of Defense installations that depend on MCLB Albany when they are threatened by a hurricane.
One of the missions here is to support ‘safe haven’ operations. ‘Safe haven’ operations allow units to evacuate here when required due to the threat of a hurricane. MCLB Albany and its tenant commands support these evacuation operations by providing a safe location until those units can return to their home station.
Members of the NWS, Kelly Godsey, senior service hydrologist/meteorologist and Blair School, lead meteorologist/associate warning coordination meteorologist, briefed on the forecasted 2019 hurricane season, climatological factors that can change the forecast, and provided information on specific hazards that impact the installations that MCLB Albany supports during ‘safe haven’ operations.
The WFO also supports MCLB Albany during special events such as the upcoming Independence Day celebration by providing information on lightning in the area and high winds which are both a safety issues.
Dancer said, “The benefit of having direct support by the NWS WFO to our event helps us make decisions that allow the community to enjoy themselves, knowing that we are watching out for them.”
The NWS also supports the MCLB Albany annual Preparedness Fair during National Preparedness Month by sending personnel onsite to explain weather phenomena to the Marines, Sailors, family members and employees of MCLB Albany during the fair.