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NOAA CONCLUDES SUCCESSFUL HURRICANE AWARENESS TOUR
Continued Preparedness Efforts Urged

NOAA image of school children visiting the NOAA hurricane hunter aircraft while on a stop in Mobile, Ala., on May 3, 2006.May 5, 2006 With the official start of the Atlantic hurricane season less than one month away, NOAA's 2006 Hurricane Awareness Tour came to a successful conclusion today in Tampa, Fla., delivering its message of the need for hurricane preparedness to thousands of visitors and media audiences. (Click NOAA image for larger view of school children visiting the NOAA hurricane hunter aircraft while on a stop in Mobile, Ala., on May 3, 2006. Click here for high resolution version. Please credit “NOAA.”)

More than 4,000 students and other guests throughout the Gulf Coast region toured "Kermit," one of NOAA's Lockheed WP-3D Orion hurricane hunter aircraft, during stops in Brownsville and Beaumont, Texas; Mobile, Ala.; and West Palm Beach and Tampa, Fla., which were extensively covered by local and regional media.

Max Mayfield, director of the NOAA National Hurricane Center, emphasized the importance of an individual hurricane plan. "We know that people who have a hurricane plan, and execute that plan, fare much better than those that do not," said Mayfield. "Each person needs to take individual responsibility and make preparations now."

NOAA image of school children getting the inside scoop of flying into hurricanes from NOAA electronics technician Bill Olney while aboard the NOAA hurricane hunter aircraft during a stop in Brownsville, Texas., on May 1, 2006.The NOAA National Weather Service forecast offices arranged the event with local governments, emergency managers, FEMA, schools, the public and the media in a team effort to increase hurricane awareness and encourage preparedness in this vulnerable area of the nation. (Click NOAA image for larger view of school children getting the inside scoop of flying into hurricanes from NOAA electronics technician Bill Olney while aboard the NOAA hurricane hunter aircraft during a stop in Brownsville, Texas., on May 1, 2006. Click here for high resolution version. Please credit “NOAA.”)

"Educating the public is an ongoing mission. Hurricane season starts on June 1 and coastal residents need to be prepared," said Bill Proenza, director of the NOAA National Weather Service southern region.

NOAA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of the nation's coastal and marine resources.

Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners, 61 countries and the European Commission to develop a global network that is as integrated as the planet it observes, predicts and protects.

Relevant Web Sites
NOAA Hurricane Preparedness Week

NOAA National Hurricane Center

NOAA Aircraft Operations Center

NOAA Satellite Images of 2005 Storms

NOAA Hurricanes Page

Media Contact:
Dennis Feltgen, NOAA National Weather Service, (301) 713-0622 ext. 127
(Photos courtesy of Lori Bast, NOAA Aircraft Operations Center.)