Noaa Marine Weather Images
I would like to call attention to an area for improvement in the marine weather images which Noaa makes available on it''s web site, via FTPmail and via radiofax.
Noaa''s latest Marine Weather product suite for the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean, both before and after the latest product suite revision of Dec 4th, does not include "forecast synoptic Surface Charts for
these two important ocean regions.
All three of Noaa''s primary marine weather image distribution methods, the Noaa web site, the FTP Mail
server, and USCG weatherfax broadcasts from NMG, show only
past synoptic "Surface Charts" for the "past 24 hours". These consist of eight
images. Four of them now show the "West Half of the Tropical Atlantic" at 00z,
06 z, 12z and 18z. and four show the "East Half of the Tropical Atlantic for
00z, 06z, 12z and 18z. These images give a mariner a look back in time but
not a look forward! I believe we need "forecast" synoptic images for the next 24, 48, and 72 or 96 hours for the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean. I have been in communication with Noaa about this subject for months without success.
There are no forecast synoptic "Surface Charts" for the Gulf of Mexico and
Caribbean showing the forecast synoptic situation 24 hours, 48 hours, or 72
or 96 hours from the present. There are "Wind/Wave charts for the past 24
hours, and the next 24 and 48 hours. They show wind, waves, and any fronts,
but do not show HIGHS, LOWS or isobars, or the anticipated movement of these
features. I think this is a serious ommission of important weather data for
By comparison, Noaa''s product suites available via their web site, FTP mail
and for broadcast via USCG weatherfax do show forecast synoptic Surface
Charts" for 24, 48, and 72 or 96 hours for the two other primary Ocean
regions, the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. These are represented by
the images broadcast by USCG station NMF in Boston, Massachusetts; and by
USCG station NMC in California.
I absolutely do not understand why forecast synoptic Surface Charts are not
made available for the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean. I think it is a serious
ommission of weather information for mariners. I would like to see Noaa do whatever it takes to add these images!
Capt Bob Cook
USCG Captain, 100 ton vessels
Offshore Sailing Instructor