Technology plays a big role in what the Hurricane Hunters do. They have recently started using a new piece of technology that makes their job easier.
The Hurricane Hunters finally have a satellite phones inside their aircraft. They are regularly out on missions in parts of the ocean where they cannot use regular radio signals to reach air traffic controllers. With these new phones, they are able to do so.
Lt. Col. Jeff Ragusa, Chief of Safety, says, “Well of course we're not allowed to be anywhere we don't have clearance to be, so when we get out into the storm environment, that's our only clearance. We have to stay inside that storm environment. At some point, we get to a fuel state where we need to go home and we're too low often to talk to someone on the radio to get permission to leave that storm and head home, so when you can just pick up a phone and call and ask for permission to come home, it's just huge.”
The Hurricane Hunters recently used the satellite phone during hurricane Arthur and tell News 25 it made a huge difference on their mission, making communication with the ground much easier.