Into the eye of the storm: Hurricane hunters fly into Lane to collect data on storm's path
HAWAII (HawaiiNewsNow) - As Hurricane Lane continues its track through the Central Pacific basin, forecasters plan on flying into the eye of the storm to better determine its path — and whether or not it'll hit the Big Island.
On Sunday night, hurricane hunters with the US Air Force are flying through Hurricane Lane to measure speed, air temperature and other data that will give forecasters a better idea of what the storm will do.
It's the first time a hurricane hunter plane has flown through a storm in the central Pacific.
RT @HRD_AOML_NOAA: History is being made today! A NOAA Hurricane Hunter P-3 is flying into a hurricane in the Central Pacific for the first time in their history! #NOAA42 is on its way to Hurricane Lane from Honolulu and AOML scientists are on board. pic.twitter.com/PvX9ZBMQjU— NWSHonolulu (@NWSHonolulu) August 20, 2018
The National Weather Service makes predictions based on more than a dozen forecast models, and most of them show Lane weakening due to wind shear and cooler water temperatures, eventually passing south of Hawaii.
However one model, from the Global Forecast System, predicts the storm will take a hard north turn toward the Big Island.
"When we see a model like the GFS has been doing where it's wavering around a little from one run to the next, it gives you a little less confidence that it has a good handle on the system being there," said Bob Burke, a forecaster with the National Weather Service.
While most of the more reliable forecast models predict Lane will pass by the islands, forecasters urge residents to be prepared.
Even a weak storm system could bring significant amounts of rain, flooding and more humidity, according to officials.
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